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Not a fiction, but a medical diagnosis: what is important to know about PTSD

Post-traumatic stress disorder is a diagnosis that becomes especially threatening during wartime. Among Ukrainians, there are many myths and false opinions about PTSD.

The Media of Big Stories reports useful information about the common diagnosis in the realities of war – PTSD. Psychologists and psychotherapists answer questions.

There are many myths surrounding PTSD in society / Photo by Ehimetalor Akhere Unuabona on Unsplash

PTSD is a post-traumatic stress disorder that develops in people who have experienced or witnessed a traumatic event. PTSD is accompanied not only by a physical, but also by a psychological threat: after all, people fear for their own lives and the lives of their loved ones.

There are many fictions and myths surrounding this disorder. In addition, often people who fought or were in a combat zone encounter misunderstanding of the environment and contempt for their condition.

PTSD is most common in countries where military operations are active. Learn what's so important to understand about PTSD.

PTSD can develop some time after the trauma / Photo by Julia Taubitz on Unsplash

Important about PTSD

1. Not every Ukrainian man or woman develops PTSD. According to statistics, the prevalence of the disorder among the population of a country at war can be as high as 50%. However, whether or not it develops depends not only on the situation of the injury, but also on genetics, previous experience, and even the person's profession and type of employment.

2. How to recognize PTSD on your own? This skill is very important for every Ukrainian who faces the stresses of war every day. It is important to know that the symptoms of PTSD often do not develop immediately, but about 1 – 3 months after the traumatic event.

Signs of PTSD

  • Constant reliving of the event, haunting memories of it. People recall traumatic experiences in all the details over and over again. This sign is the most striking in post-traumatic stress disorder.

  • Attempts to avoid any mention of events: places, events, people, conversations, etc.

  • Excessive vigilance, nervousness, constant control over everything and the search for potential danger.

  • Sudden changes in mood and emotional state.

3. PTSD can be cured. There are proven methods of treatment consisting of a combination of psychotherapy and drugs. However, the result will depend not only on the treatment, but also on the support of loved ones and the motivation of the patient himself.

It is also important to understand that people with PTSD need time for recovery, social adjustment, etc.

4. Sedatives do not cure PTSD. Post-traumatic syndrome is a serious diagnosis that requires professional medical care. Long-term use of self-prescribed sedatives can only make things worse.

5. Not all people with PTSD behave aggressively. This myth lives among a considerable number of people.

There are 3 forms of PTSD: anger, shame, and fear. They all have different behaviors: helplessness, anxiety, guilt, and various phobias.

6. The good news is that about half of people with PTSD can recover on their own within a year of the injury.

However, in the other half of people, the symptoms can only intensify and become more severe from minor ones.

How to understand that you need to see a doctor? If it is difficult for you to live your everyday life, to perform social functions and this condition lasts more than six months after the injury, you should contact a psychotherapist who will provide qualified assistance.


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