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Combatting post-traumatic stress disorder

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Impacting 5.2 million adults (18-52) every year, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition triggered by a traumatic event. Symptoms of PTSD include nightmares, extreme anxiety and flashbacks. Some other common names for the condition include nostalgia, estar roto (Spanish for “to be broken”), shell shock and battle fatigue. It can be caused by combat exposure, childhood sexual or physical abuse, natural disasters, serious accidents or a terrorist attack. It’s not fully understood why some people get PTSD while others do not.

The term “Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder” didn’t enter our vocabulary until the 1980s, when it appeared in the DSM-III. It’s now estimated that 7.8 percent of Americans will experience the condition at some point in their lives. The four types of PTSD symptoms include re-living the event, avoiding situations that serve as reminders of the event, negative changes in beliefs and feelings and hyperarousal.

PTSD is treated with psychotherapy and medication. To learn more about the condition and how you may be able to help someone who is suffering from PTSD, please take a look at this infographic.

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