What is PTSD

By Rania Watts

A survivor of childhood abuse who may hear a belt buckle click and fear another beating, the woman who was sexually assaulted on her morning walk through nature trails always fearing open spaces, for the veteran who came back from war searching for a sense of normalcy.  Post-Traumatic Stress Syndrome aka PTSD can manifest itself in several various ways.  

f you prefer a more clinical definition as opposed to a painted picture “Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that’s triggered by a terrifying event — either experiencing it or witnessing it. Symptoms may include flashbacks, nightmares and severe anxiety, as well as uncontrollable thoughts about the event.” (Mayo Clinic) 

Many humans who experience PTSD must work through various intrusive memories that may include:

·         “Recurrent, unwanted distressing memories of the traumatic event

·         Reliving the traumatic event as if it were happening again (flashbacks)

·         Upsetting dreams or nightmares about the traumatic event

·         Severe emotional distress or physical reactions to something that reminds you of the   traumatic event” (Mayo Clinic) 

I cannot imagine living my life like that: the constant reliving of a moment in time that could cause much damage to a human’s psyche and requires proper medical attention.  

There was a video that I watched during my Victimology Graduate Certificate year, which genuinely highlighted PTSD in a fashion where the viewers could better comprehend PTSD and how it occurs. The chances are, those individuals who are survivors trying to work their way through their PTSD – can find all of the emotions extremely crippling. 

Everyone works through and goes through this differently and this should not deter your courage as PTSD is treatable.  Please reach out to a professional if you have encountered any of the intrusive memories above. 


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