It’s estimated that 4-10% of adults and up to one-third of veterans have PTSD, a mental health disorder that has a significant impact on your emotional health and interferes with your daily life. Dr. Dwight A. Owens at Peachstate Psychiatric Services has years of experience helping patients with PTSD overcome symptoms and recover. To learn more about PTSD and its treatment, call the office in Atlanta or book an appointment online.
PTSD develops after you experience or witness an event that’s traumatic or life-threatening. You don’t have to directly experience the event to develop PTSD, however.
You may also have PTSD if you learn about a trauma that happened to a close relative or friend or you’re threatened with harm, even if you weren’t hurt.
PTSD may arise from a variety of situations, including physical or sexual assault, combat exposure, a serious accident, or the unexpected death of a loved one. It can develop at any age, including in children.
If you have PTSD, you may feel anxious or frightened even when you’re not in physical danger. The feelings triggered by PTSD are significant and may prevent you from engaging in normal daily activities.
The range of symptoms caused by PTSD include:
This includes having recurrent dreams, spontaneous memories, or flashbacks to the traumatic event. These memories lead to intense emotional distress.
PTSD triggers behaviors and emotions that are beyond your pre-PTSD personality or behaviors. You may become reckless, aggressive, or engage in self-destructive behavior.
You may go out of your way to avoid people, places, or situations that remind you of the PTSD-associated event.
Many patients with PTSD persistently feel angry, fearful, or isolated. You may blame yourself or others for the traumatic event.
Treatment for PTSD often includes a combination of medication and therapy. Various medications are used to alleviate the emotions and behaviors triggered by PTSD, as well as other associated symptoms, such as nightmares.
Psychotherapy helps you learn ways to cope with the traumatic event, which in turn diminishes its impact on your emotions and behaviors. Many types of therapies are available, but cognitive behavioral techniques such as exposure therapy and cognitive restructuring often work well for patients with PTSD.
If you have PTSD, or wonder whether your emotional and behavioral challenges may be due to PTSD, call Peachstate Psychiatric Services or book an appointment online.