PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) is a silent and invisible disability that can destroy the lives of the afflicted and those around them.
It’s not new but had not be defined and identified until recent years. It is a disorder suffered by the military as well as civilians especially those in Law Enforcement and Firefighters.
PTSD is caused primarily by exposure to a devastating event or events occurring on3e time or over a period of time. Some describe it as a wound on the soul that doesn’t heal. Left untreated it can lead to disaster such as suicide.
Some of the most common symptoms of PTSD include the following:
- Intense feelings of distress when reminded of a tragic event
- Extreme physical reactions to reminders of trauma such as a nausea, sweating or a pounding heart
- Invasive, upsetting memories of a tragedy
- Flashbacks (feeling like the trauma is happening again)
- Nightmares of either frightening things or of the event
- Loss of interest in life and daily activities
- Feeling emotionally numb and detached from other people
- Sense of a not leading a normal life (not having a positive outlook of your future)
- Avoiding certain activities, feelings, thoughts or places that remind you of the tragedy
- Difficulty remembering important aspects of a tragic event
If you are seeing these symptoms of PTSD in a loved one, please take steps to help them. There are many similar symptoms and should not been ignored. If you or your love one served in the military or has experienced a traumatic life event, please don’t ignore it. The VA has programs for veterans, there are many organizations dealing with mental health issues, support groups and in an emergency, hospital care can prevent a heartbreaking outcome.
PTSD is often accompanied by drug and alcohol abuse. For combat veterans, these are the ways they shut off the war in their head. It must be devastating to be in their shoes.
We at Project Help do our part by giving them a reason to get out of bed each day. Many veterans love to do volunteer work that helps their brothers and sisters in arms. Helping others, helps yourself.