Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) occurs after experiencing a harrowing event. It is an anxiety disorder that hinders you from coming to terms with what has happened. People who have experienced a traumatic event usually go through various emotions before the acceptance stage, which could affect their quality of life. Book an appointment today with America’s TMS Center for treatment of PTSD in Irvine if you are experiencing difficulties coping with your condition. Below is all that you need to know about PTSD.
What are the risk factors of PTSD?
Anyone at any age is at risk of developing PTSD. However, some factors increase the chances for some people. They include:
- Brains structure: According to past research and scans, people with PTSD have a different appearance of the hippocampus compared to people without the condition. The hippocampus is the part of your brain tasked with processing memories and emotions. Its structure and appearance might play a role in the chances of experiencing flashbacks.
- Stress response: The human body is adapted to release hormones in the case of a flight or a fight situation. Study shows that the level of hormones released in such cases is different for people with PTSD meaning that it could increase the chances of the condition.
- Gender: Women are at a higher risk of developing PTSD than men. This is even though men experience violence more than women. Therefore, gender may play a role.
What are the causes of PTSD?
PTSD is caused by situations that trigger helplessness, shock, horror, or fear. These situations include serious accidents, terrorist attacks, personal assault, rape, abuse, natural disasters, and the loss of a loved one. People could develop PTSD after receiving a shocking or life-threatening diagnosis. There is no known prevention of PTSD, but people could avoid substance abuse and seek social support, especially when going through stressful situations such as losing a loved one.
Symptoms of PTSD
Most symptoms of PTSD start within the first three months after experiencing a traumatic event. The main types of symptoms include:
- Intrusion symptoms: These symptoms include unwanted memories of an event, nightmares, flashbacks, and severe reactions when reminded about the event.
- Avoidance: People with PTSD also try to avoid talking or thinking about their traumatic experiences. This includes avoiding people and places that remind them about the event.
- Arousal symptoms: Patients have difficulties sleeping, feel tense, have anger outbursts, and are hypersensitive to potential dangers. Such people will find it hard to concentrate and will be easily frightened by most circumstances.
- Mood and thinking: People with PTSD are often mentally numbed, detaching themselves emotionally from others. They lose hope and interest in life or may sometimes develop other mental health issues such as depression.
The intensity of PTSD symptoms varies from one person to another. If the symptoms are severe and you can hardly live a normal life, it may be time to seek professional help. Doctors will help you manage the situation before it gets worse. They may use cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) or transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to treat the condition. Book an appointment today to find out more and begin recovery.