Post-traumatic stress disorder did not appear in any classification until 1980 where it was first classified in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual. From that day forward, the disorder has some that accept it as a disorder while others attack the diagnosis. If you pay much attention, PTSD is truly getting more attention such as in movies like the American Sniper as well as others that have hit the street and internet to bring awareness to the illness. Then there are others that use PTSD to promote their own cause just to draw attention to themselves or their cause that has truly nothing to do with the diagnostic criteria for suffering from PTSD.
According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders in the most recent edition, the diagnostic criteria include twenty possible symptoms that are divided between four clusters.
Re-experiencing Cluster: (5 symptoms)
Memories trigger psychological pain
Memories trigger physiological pain
Evasive Cluster: (2 symptoms)
Avoiding internal memories
Avoiding external memories
Distorted Perceptions and Moods Cluster: (7 symptoms)
Separated from memories known as dissociative amnesia
Pessimistic thoughts regarding the world and themselves
Blaming themselves unwarranted
Pessimistic emotional state constantly
No interest in normal activities (self-care, etc...)
Disinterest in loved ones
Restricted range of involvement
Increased Stimulation Cluster: (6 symptoms)
Always on-guard or tense
Exaggerated surprise response
Outbursts of annoyance or anger
Reckless behavior or self-destructive
In order to be diagnosed with PTSD, a person must experience one of the symptoms in re-experiencing, 1 in evasive, 2 in distorted perceptions, and 2 in stimulation. One person may only have 6 symptoms while another may have all 20. It is very important if a person is showing any of the above symptoms or is experiencing any of the signs it is imperative to contact a professional.
PTSD left untreated can cause all kinds of other mental issues including:
Lack of having the ability to sustain healthy relationships
Thoughts of suicide
Other Disorders that are often Co-Occurring with PTSD
Around 80% of all individuals suffering from PTSD also have a diagnosis of another mental disorder with the most common being:
Social anxiety disorder
Help is Available
No matter where you live, you should contact a professional at once if you or a loved one are experiencing any of these feelings or thoughts. In Centerton, AR and the surrounding area, there are professionals ready to help. Through the proper channels and therapies, individuals with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder can lead a normal life. However, left untreated, PTSD can and will lead to other mental illnesses and possibly suicide. Contact a counselor that has experience working with individuals with PTSD so you can enjoy life or to help a loved one realize just how much they are appreciated and loved.