All of us go through some incidents in our lives that are traumatic for us. Some get over it and lead a normal life, while the others relive it repeatedly. Posttraumatic stress disorder or PTSD is one of those conditions.
For an individual suffering with PTSD any stimuli associated to the trauma, external or internal, may trigger the symptoms. Living with PTSD is a constant everyday struggle, affecting various areas of life. Here let us look at the ways PTSD affects an individual:
- Emotional effects: PTSD can leave a person guilty of the traumatic incident. They may end up constantly blaming themselves. They also feel numb and unable to enjoy any activities. As they tend to avoid triggers associated to the trauma, they may experience intense anxiousness when they suspect these triggers. At times the feeling associated to the trauma could be so intense that it may result in the individual harming themselves.
- Physical effects: Our body is programmed to either fight or run away from any threatening situations. In PTSD the individual experiences very intense sensations, when there is a trigger, that their flight or fight mechanism freezes and they feel stuck in that moment of distress. Many individuals also indulge in substance use as a way to cope with the symptoms. This only adds up to the existing problem and affects both physical and mental health.
- Effects on children: Childhood is a very vulnerable age of development; any changes here may stay for a long time. Children at their age are still developing emotional and mental resources to help them cope with difficulties. PTSD at this age may just catch them off guard without the resources to cope. The child’s development here is greatly affected. Also here, close attention should be paid to the child’s behaviour as they tend to express PTSD differently from adults.
- Effect on family: PTSD changes a person’s behaviour, changing their relationship with others. Since the individual’s behaviour is changed, they come across as a different person. This may, at times, create a lot of negative feelings in family members. With the individual with PTSD, family members could also end up avoiding places and activities that trigger PTSD symptoms. This may bring about a lot of limitations for the family members. It could result in guilt and anger towards the suffering individual. And lastly, there could always be the feeling that their family can never be normal again and this could create a lot of resentment towards the individual with PTSD.
- Other areas of life: PTSD can affect a person’s social status. Due to the symptoms they may avoid interacting with other people and limit their out-going. This could affect their social relationships. Also due to the symptoms their focus and productivity at work may be greatly affected.
Though PTSD can be very overwhelming, there is still hope to lead a normal functional life. There are various therapies provided by mental health professionals that can help an individual suffering from PTSD get back to their normal life. To help a loved one cope over PTSD, get in touch with our professionals on +919741476476.