Today’s post departs from the world of brain injury to address an important issue in the lives of Veterans, military, and civilian populations. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is an anxiety disorder that changes how someone’s body and mind respond to stress. Usually after a stressful event, the hormones released during traumatic events return to normal levels. The body recovers, and the individual assimilates the event effectively. In PTSD, the stress hormones do not return to normal. The individual does not process and assimilate the event effectively. The event changes how people view the world and themselves. Examples of experiences that can lead to PTSD include: accidents, natural disasters, war, assaults, terrorist actions.
There is no known reason why some people develop PTSD and others do not. There are some theories, such a genetic predisposition, exposure to past trauma, depression, and the immediate support system after the event. Individuals with a strong, accepting support system tend to have a lower incidence of PTSD. It is not a sign of weakness. People of all backgrounds, ages, and all genders can develop PTSD. (reference)