Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

post traumatic stress disorder

PTSD

When we think about PTSD ( Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) we tend to think about front line soldiers or military personnel and the trauma they have experienced in wartime.

However, PTSD can effect any of us if we suffer or experience an abnormal situation that causes severe distress or shock.

Someone with PTSD often relives the traumatic event through nightmares and flashbacks and may experience feelings of isolation, irritability or guilt. They may have problems sleeping or find concentrating difficult.

Sometimes they feel angry or constantly alert, as if expecting something to happen.

People are sometimes able to recover from acute stress of this nature by using their own coping skills and with support from family and friends. However if a month or so has passed since the event, and significant distress is still being felt, this may signify PTSD, which without help, can become both chronic and disabling.

 

PTSD is not a sign of weakness – it is a normal reaction to an abnormal situation. Treating this by initially talking to a sympathetic, non- judgmental listener can begin to break down the stress and anxieties and start the healing process.

PTSD talking therapy has 3 main goals

– to improve your symptoms
– to teach you coping skills
– to bring back self esteem

 

Emergency Services/First Responders

Emergency Services - First Responders increased risk of PTSD
Image source Manchester Evening News

First responders such as ambulance personnel, police officers and firefighters are the first people on the scene when disaster strikes.

Because of this, they are exposed to highly stressful, traumatic events in the course of their routine duties. Their work often includes witnessing the terror, pain and tragedy of others, and sometimes also risking their own lives.

Factors which lead to an increased risk of PTSD in First Responders

• repeated exposure to death
• chronic fatigue levels
• witnessing the death of a child
• after a particularly traumatic call, having to carry on and respond to other calls regardless.
• cumulative stress because of repeated exposure to trauma
• having no control over the volume of calls
• prolonged or failed interventions

Loraine’s background as a nurse and close knowledge of the experiences of her partner, who has military experience as a combat medical technician and now works in the Emergency Services means she can bring an understanding and empathetic approach to dealing with issues around PTSD and it’s effects.

 

If you would like to find out more, or arrange a session,

You can talk to Loraine on 01942 512 263