Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a serious biological and psychological brain disorder that is the result of exposure to shocking or life-threatening experiences. As many as 20% of combat veterans returning from Iraq or Afghanistan suffer from this potentially life-threatening disease. Untreated PTSD can wreak havoc on a person’s life.
Some of the common results of ongoing and unaddressed PTSD include the following:
- Relationship problems
- Difficulty maintaining a job
- Substance abuse and addiction
- Anger management issues that lead to criminal prosecution
- Suicidal thoughts or actions
PTSD is a recognized mental disability. Individuals who have been diagnosed and are being treated for it cannot be discriminated against as a result of their condition. Those who have not been officially diagnosed, and are not being treated, may find it impossible to function in the workplace.
What Is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder?
The brain manages psychological functions such as emotions, memory, panic response, sleep and many others through a fragile system of chemical signals in the central nervous system. Exposure to trauma causes spikes in naturally occurring chemicals such as adrenaline. The “rush” that the brain uses as a defense mechanism during times of emergency can have similar effects as drugs like amphetamine or cocaine in the brain.
This can lead to serious chemical imbalances that may last for years or even a lifetime. Some of the most common symptoms of PTSD include the following:
- Panic attacks
- Nightmares and sleep disorders
- Impulse control disorders
- Compulsive behaviors
- Substance abuse
- Difficulty concentrating or paying attention
Anyone facing these symptoms will find full-time employment challenging at best. Because many people with PTSD have no awareness of their disease or are unwilling to seek help for it, the symptoms may be endured for a considerable amount of time before PTSD is identified.
How Is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Treated?
Effective PTSD treatment includes a combination of medical therapy and counseling. The most successful PTSD treatment experts are constantly developing innovative and holistic ways to treat all aspects of the disease. Recovering individuals with PTSD can find healing by combining techniques such as dialectical behavior therapy with group counseling and peer support.
Only a recovery professional can determine the best treatment options for an individual making at-home attempts at recovery overwhelming and unsuccessful.
Who Gets PTSD?
PTSD is frequently experienced by the following people:
- Firemen, policemen and other first responders
- Victims of violent crime
- Individuals exposed to the death or maiming of another
- People who survive natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunamis, fires or floods
Individuals who are exposed to persistent low levels of stress may also exhibit symptoms of PTSD. This could be the result of ongoing emotional or physical abuse or bullying. If the cause of your PTSD is related to your job or job environment, maintaining employment and finding recovery can be an even greater challenge.
End PTSD before You Lose Your Job
If you are experiencing symptoms of PTSD, please call our helpline at (877) 345-1887 We are here to talk with you about your concerns and, when you are ready, to connect you with the best recovery resources for this devastating disease. Find the help you need before PTSD ruins your relationships, your job and your health.