Another form of anxiety disorder that is becoming more commonly known is post traumatic stress disorder or PSTD. It is most associated with people who have served in an arm of the military, but it can affect anyone. If a person has experienced a traumatic event in their life, they can develop a form of PSTD. The traumatic event may have happened directly to the person or been witnessed. It involved the threat of loss of life or extreme physical danger. The feeling of fear that was experienced at the time was overwhelming. Examples of events that can cause PSTD are: combat, terror strikes, violent crimes, serious accidents, or natural disasters.
The event causes a person to feel confused, scared, and/or angry. When the feelings increase or do not subside over time. then PSTD can be a potential outcome. There are a few symptoms that occur after this kind of life altering event:
•constant memories of the event either nightmares or flashbacks
•feeling upset about or reliving the event
•avoidance of anything or anyone that reminds one of the event
•feeling of being in harm’s way all the time
•feeling apathetic or numb to everything and everyone around
A person suffering from PSTD changes their outlook on life and how they live it. They often turn to drugs and alcohol to self-medicate and numb its effects. They exhibit symptoms of other anxiety disorders like social anxiety disorder and panic disorder. They push away the ones that they love and try to isolate themselves from the world. Depression sets in as well. Adults and children can suffer from this type of anxiety disorder.
The key to PSTD is early treatment. If you feel you are suffering from this disorder or someone you know is, you need to seek professional medical and mental health assistance right away. You may also seek the counsel of close friends, religious leaders, or find a support group. Counseling and medication are the avenues of treatment for this type of anxiety disorder. Counseling can help the person with PSTD learn to cope with the traumatic event. They can help the person learn to deal with the effects that it is having on them and how to rejoin regular everyday life. Cognitive-behavior therapy is the cornerstone of this approach. Antidepressants can be prescribed to help the PSTD sufferer deal with the constant worry that comes with the disorder.
Though it is typical to only hear about the bad outcomes that can be associated with PSTD, the good news is that through treatment and support a person can learn to deal with the disorder and regain control of their life again.