People who experience traumatic events are often times deeply scarred by the experience, sometimes being affected by the trauma for years. When people think of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) thoughts of battle hardened veterans usually come to mind. While it is fair to say that the majority of cases in the United States are linked to battle fatigue, practically everyone has the potential to develop a problem in the wake of a traumatic experience—such as witnessing violence or being the victim of a sexual assault.
Symptoms Of PTSD
People who suffer from post traumatic stress disorder can exhibit a number of different symptoms. It is paramount that such symptoms be treated, failure to do so can lead to one’s life spiraling out of control. According to the National Center for PTSD, there are four types of PTSD symptoms:
- Reliving the event (also called re-experiencing symptoms).
- Avoiding situations that remind you of the event.
- Negative changes in beliefs and feelings.
- Feeling keyed up (also called hyperarousal).
Permanent PTSD Solutions
Sadly, most people living with post traumatic stress often do not have access to resources that can help them learn to cope with the disorder so they can function in everyday life. More often than not, people will rely on drugs and alcohol in order to cope with the internal pain. Mind altering substances can, in fact, seem to provide some temporary relief to one’s symptoms.
However, over time the chemicals stop working and only serve to exacerbate the condition and can lead to addiction. In the grips of despair, battling both the PTSD and substance use disorders, those suffering will often find living their life to be futile. It is quite common for people living with the disorder to choose a permanent solution to a temporary problem—opting for suicide.
Awareness And Recovery
June is PTSD Awareness Month and June 27, 2016, was designated by the U.S. Senate as National PTSD Awareness Day. The National Center for PTSD is calling on the country to help raise awareness about the condition and to help inform others that there is treatment available. The organization asks that everyone take advantage of the power of social media and share how to get help for the condition. You can learn how treatment works, reach out to someone and spread the word.
Substance abuse and addiction along with co-occurring disorders like PTSD can make it nearly impossible for men and women to hold a steady job, function in their family environment, go to school, or build satisfying personal relationships. It is critical that people seek help for all their conditions to return to a full, productive and happy life. If you are suffering from PTSD and are also abusing drugs or alcohol, please contact Family Recovery Specialists to begin the process of recovery.