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About Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

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Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that is caused by either experiencing, or witnessing, a traumatic event. While PTSD is associated with veterans and first-responders, PTSD can be experienced by anyone at any age.

After being exposed to a traumatic event, it is natural to feel distressed and  have difficulty adjusting and coping. Not everyone who lives through a traumatic event develops PTSD, in fact many people with time, adequate support, and self-care, will recover. But when the symptoms get worse, last for months (or years), and interfere with day-to-day life, it may be PTSD.

The reason some people develop PTSD while others don't is due to a range of factors — some of these factors are present before the trauma; others become important during and after a traumatic event. It is very important to understand that PTSD has nothing to do with mental strength. There are risk factors that put some people at a higher risk and are not within a person's control. 

Symptoms may include flashbacks, nightmares and severe anxiety, as well as uncontrollable thoughts about the event.
 

Getting effective treatment as soon as PTSD symptoms develop can be critical to reduce symptoms and improve function.

Treatments

Recommended treatments for PTSD in adults include:

  • Psychological treatments, particularly those designed specifically for the treatment of PTSD. 
  • Medication treatments, both to help with symptoms of PTSD and co-occurring conditions  such as depression.

Next-step treatments

Just as each person's experience of trauma is different, so too is each person's response to treatment. For those who continue to experience symptoms despite first- and second-line treatments, there are a range of emerging next-step therapies which are being investigated for their benefits with improving PTSD symptoms.

For information about next-step treatments, speak to your healthcare provider about whether a referral to The Monarch Clinic Australia is an appropriate next step.

For more information about PTSD, visit: Phoenix Australia https://www.phoenixaustralia.org

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