Learning More About Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Treatment for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

People with post-traumatic stress disorder can be helped by medications and carefully targeted psychotherapy. Studies have demonstrated the efficacy of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), group therapy, and exposure therapy, in which the person gradually and repeatedly relives the frightening experience under controlled conditions to help him or her work through the trauma. Studies also have found that several types of medication, particularly the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and other antidepressants, can help relieve the symptoms of PTSD.
 

Facts on Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Post-traumatic stress disorder affects about 5.2 million adult Americans. Women are more likely than men to develop it.
 
The condition can occur at any age, including childhood, and there is some evidence that susceptibility to post-traumatic stress disorder may run in families.
 
Post-traumatic stress disorder is often accompanied by depression, substance abuse, or one or more other anxiety disorders.
 
In severe cases, the person may have trouble working or socializing. In general, the symptoms seem to be worse if the event that triggered them was deliberately initiated by a person -- such as a rape or kidnapping.
 
Ordinary events can serve as reminders of the trauma and trigger flashbacks or intrusive images. A person having a flashback, which can come in the form of images, sounds, smells, or feelings, may lose touch with reality and believe that the traumatic event is happening all over again.
 
Not every traumatized person gets full-blown post-traumatic stress disorder or even experiences it at all.
 
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Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Info

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