A traumatic event is something terrible and scary that you see, hear about, or that happens to you, like: You may feel afraid or feel that you have no control over what is happening around you. Most people have some stress-related reactions after a traumatic event; but, not everyone gets PTSD. If your reactions don't go away over time and they disrupt your life, you may have PTSD.
How does PTSD develop? Most people who go through a trauma have some symptoms at the beginning. Only some will develop PTSD over time. It isn't clear why some people develop PTSD and others don't. Whether or not you get PTSD depends on many things: PTSD symptoms usually start soon after the traumatic event, but they may not appear until months or years later.
They also may come and go over many years. If the symptoms last longer than four weeks, cause you great distress, or interfere with your work or home life, you might have PTSD. There are four types of symptoms of PTSD 1. Reliving the event also called re-experiencing symptoms You may have bad memories or nightmares. You even may feel like you're going through the event again.
This is called a flashback. Avoiding situations that remind you of the event You may try to avoid situations or people that trigger memories of the traumatic event. You may even avoid talking or thinking about the event. Negative changes in beliefs and feelings The way you think about yourself and others may change because of the trauma.
You may feel fear, guilt, or shame. Or, you may not be interested in activities you used to enjoy. This is another way to avoid memories. Feeling keyed up also called hyperarousal You may be jittery, or always alert and on the lookout for danger. Or, you may have trouble concentrating or sleeping.
This is known as hyperarousal. Can children have PTSD? Children can have PTSD too. They may have symptoms described above or other symptoms depending on how old they are. As children get older, their symptoms are more like those of adults. Here are some examples of PTSD symptoms in children: Some have nightmares or become more irritable or aggressive.
They may also want to avoid school or have trouble with schoolwork or friends. What other problems do people with PTSD experience?
People with PTSD may also have other problems. The coping skills you learn in treatment can work for PTSD and these related problems. Will I get better? Your symptoms don't have to interfere with your everyday activities, work, and relationships. What treatments are available?
When you have PTSD, dealing with the past can be hard. Instead of telling others how you feel, you may keep your feelings bottled up. But treatment can help you get better. There are two main types of treatment, psychotherapy sometimes called counseling and medication.
Sometimes people combine psychotherapy and medication. There is hope and if these symptoms are familiar to you we encourage you to seek help with a qualified trauma therapist.