By Neepa Sevak
What is PTSD?
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder that can develop after exposure to one or more terrifying events that threatened or caused grave physical harm. It is a severe and ongoing emotional reaction to an extreme psychological trauma. This stressor may involve someone's actual death, a threat to the patient's or someone else's life, serious physical injury, or threat to physical or psychological integrity, overwhelming psychological defenses.
In some cases it can also be from profound psychological and emotional trauma, apart from any actual physical harm. Often, however, the two are combined. PTSD is a condition distinct from traumatic stress, which has less intensity and duration, and combat stress reaction, which is transitory. PTSD has also been recognized in the past as railway spine, shell shock, battle fatigue, traumatic war neurosis, or post-traumatic stress syndrome (PTSS).
Diagnostic symptoms include re-experience such as flashbacks and nightmares, avoidance of stimuli associated with the trauma, increased arousal such as difficulty falling or staying asleep, anger and hypervigilance. Per definition, the symptoms last more than 6 months and cause significant impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning (e.g. problems with work and relationships.)
Causes of PTSD
PTSD is believed to be caused by psychological trauma. Possible sources of trauma includes encountering or witnessing childhood or adult physical, emotional or sexual abuse. Encountering or witnessing an event perceived as life-threatening such as physical assault, adult experiences of sexual assault, accidents, drug addiction, illnesses, medical complications, or the experience of, or employment in occupations exposed to war (such as soldiers) or disaster (such as emergency service workers).
Traumatic events that may cause PTSD symptoms to develop include violent assault, kidnapping, sexual assault, torture, being a hostage, prisoner of war or concentration camp victim, experiencing a disaster, violent automobile accidents or getting a diagnosis of a life-threatening illness. Children may develop PTSD symptoms by experiencing sexually traumatic events like age-inappropriate sexual experiences.
Witnessing traumatic experiences or learning about these experiences may also cause the development of PTSD symptoms. The amount of dissociation that follows directly after a trauma predicts PTSD: individuals who are more likely to dissociate during a traumatic event are considerably more likely to develop chronic PTSD. Members of the Marines and Army are much more likely to develop PTSD than Air Force and Navy personnel, because of greater exposure to combat. PTSD sufferers re-experience the traumatic event or events in some way. As a result, they tend to avoid places, people, or other things that remind them of the event, and are exquisitely sensitive to normal life experiences.
Many forms of psychotherapy have been advocated for trauma-related problems. Basic counseling for PTSD includes education about the condition and provision of safety and support. The psychotherapy programs with the strongest demonstrated efficacy include:
- Cognitive behavioral programs, variants of exposure therapy,
- Stress Inoculation Training (SIT), variants of Cognitive Therapy (CT),
- Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR),
- Psychodynamic psychotherapy, while widely employed, has not been
- well tested as a treatment for PTSD.
Homeopathy is very effective to treat and cure this disease. Usually a constitutional case is taken from the patient and an appropriate remedy selected to resolve the issue. Following are some sample examples of various remedies that can heal PTSD via a constitutional treatment. Ars; Merc; Sulph; Tarentual; Aurum; Acon; Stram; OP; Coffe ; Verat; Bell