Psychological Traumatic-Stress Disorder

Psychological Traumatic-Stress Disorder

Psychological Traumatic-Stress Disorders: Types, Symptoms, Causes, & Treatments

slider-img

Psychological or emotional trauma can occur when one experiences an event (or several events) in which death, serious injury, or sexual assault, are threatened— or actually occur. A person can also be traumatized by hearing of these events happening to a loved one. First responders and soldiers can experience psychological trauma as a result of repeated exposures to these types of events. Traumatic-Stress Disorders manifest as either Acute Stress Disorder or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, depending on several factors, including how long symptoms last. With medical support and psychotherapy, survivors of trauma can learn ways to manage, reduce, or eliminate their symptoms and reclaim their lives.
What Causes Traumatic Stress Disorders?

Traumatic stress disorders can develop based on a complex set of personal and trauma-specific risk factors. These include age at the time of trauma, previous exposure to trauma, family history of mental illness, and stress level prior to the trauma. Factors specific to the traumatic event also play a role in whether people are more likely to develop a traumatic stress disorder.

These factors include:

 

Types of experiences that might be perceived as emotionally traumatic include, but are not limited to:

 

Types of Psychological Trauma-Related Disorders

Acute Stress Disorder is characterized by symptoms that persist for at least 3 days and last up to a month following exposure to a traumatic event. These distressing and recurrent symptoms could include:

  • Reliving the trauma (nightmares, flashbacks)
  • Avoidance of reminders of the trauma
  • Dissociation (being in a daze, forgetting parts or all of the trauma)
  • Negative mood
  • Hyperarousal (sleep problems; irritability; concentration problems)

Following a traumatic event, the incidence of Acute Stress Disorder varies from 6-50% depending on the nature of trauma.

PTSD is characterized by significant distress as a result of symptoms that persist for more than four weeks and make it difficult to function in one or more areas of one’s life.

Symptoms of PTSD can include:

  • Reliving the trauma (nightmares, flashbacks)
  • Active avoidance of reminders of the trauma
  • Negative changes in thinking and mood
  • Hyperarousal (irritability; reduced concentration; sleep issues)1

While more than half of Americans report having experienced a traumatic event in their lifetimes, only 8.7% of the civilian population are projected to develop PTSD by 75 years of age.1 The rates of PTSD among soldiers and first responders is much higher (see section on Prevalence).

Symptoms of Acute Stress Disorder

Acute Stress Disorder is characterized by symptoms that last between 3 days and 1 month following exposure to a traumatic event, cause disruption in one or more areas of a person’s life, and are not the result of a medical issue, substance or alcohol use, or other injury. Symptoms that last beyond a month could be indicative of PTSD.

Symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

PTSD is characterized by symptoms that last longer than 1 month following exposure to a traumatic event, cause disruption in one or more areas of a person’s life, and are not the result of a medical issue, substance or alcohol use, or other injury. These symptoms might begin within hours or days of the traumatic event or might not become active until decades following the event.

Types of Anxiety Disorder

Generalized Anxiety Disorder
A common mental health condition where people experience regular, excessive anxiety. Unlike other anxiety disorders where fears are easily identified, people living with GAD have multiple fears or may be unable to identify specific causes of their anxiety.

Social Anxiety Disorder
A common condition that's characterized by excessive fear of certain social situations and specific concerns of being negatively judged by others. Often, social anxiety leads to avoidance of these situations which negatively impacts a person’s ability to function and their quality of life.
Panic Disorder
A condition characterized by the intense fear of having another panic attack. Panic attacks feature extreme symptoms of anxiety that come on suddenly and generally last several minutes. Panic disorder leads to avoidant behavior which disrupts a person’s normal routine and daily life.
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
A mental health condition defined by intrusive thoughts and repetitive behaviors ( (aka obsessions and compulsions). Those living with OCD experience intense anxiety about the nature of their obsessions and engage in compulsive behaviors to alleviate their distress. Reduction in the frequency and severity of symptoms is possible with therapy and/or medication.


Acute Stress Disorder
Develops following a traumatic experience with symptoms including upsetting memories, avoidance of trauma reminders, and impairment of normal routines and functioning. Acute stress disorder is diagnosed when symptoms occur directly after the trauma but resolve within one month. Acute stress disorder is a diagnosis used to help clinicians flag people at risk of developing PTSD following a traumatic experience like an accident, injury, or assault. Early treatment may slow or stop this progression to PTSD.
Separation Anxiety Disorder
People feel an excessive and overwhelming amount of anxiety when separated, or when anticipating being separated, from a parent, spouse, child, etc. The level of anxiety experienced is not developmentally appropriate, is persistent, and can cause significant distress sometimes impairing social, school or work functioning. It is quite common and onset often occurs in children and adolescents. Treated with talk therapy and/or medication.
counselling
Treatment of Psychological Trauma-Related Disorders

Treatment of psychological trauma-related disorders typically includes therapy, medication, or a combination of the two. The therapies that are most commonly used to treat Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) are

About

It is a long established fact that a reader will be distracted by the readable content of a page when looking at its layout. The point of using Lorem Ipsum is that it has a more-or-less normal.

It is a long established fact that a reader will be distracted by the readable content of a page when looking at its layout. The point of using Lorem Ipsum is that it has a more-or-less normal distribution of letters, as opposed to using ‘Content here, content here’, making it look like readable English. 

 Many desktop publishing packages and web page editors now use Lorem Ipsum as their default model text, and a search for ‘lorem ipsum’ will uncover many web sites still in their infancy. 

 
Need More

Other mental health issues

Anxiety & Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety describes the reactions within our minds and bodies to situations that are stressful, dangerous, or create a sense of uncertainty. Nearly everyone experiences occasional feelings of anxiety – nervousness, worry, or fear. These feelings are typically triggered
Read more

Depression: Types, Symptoms, & Treatments

Depression is a mood disorder that generally brings about sadness, but it can also influence a person’s energy, motivation, irritability, and overall well-being. It is one of the most powerful mental health conditions a person can endure.
Read more

Bipolar Disorder: Types, Causes, & Treatments

Bipolar disorder, sometimes referred to as manic-depression, is a genetically-based psychiatric disorder, which involves poorly regulated changes in brain chemistry resulting in extreme mood swings. With a proper diagnosis and treatment plan...
Read More

ADHD: Signs, Symptoms, & Treatments

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder requires the presence of symptoms related to inattention, hyperactivity/impulsivity, or both.2 It is important to note that, in isolation, any of the characteristics of the disorder can be observed ...
Read More

Schizophrenia: Symptoms & Treatments

Schizophrenia is a severe mental disorder marked by abnormalities in various areas of functioning. It is known as a psychotic disorder, which typically involves delusions, hallucinations and disorganized thinking. Schizophrenia can also impair motor...
Read More

Psychological Traumatic-Stress Disorders

Psychological or emotional trauma can occur when one experiences an event (or several events) in which death, serious injury, or sexual assault, are threatened— or actually occur. A person can also be traumatized by hearing of these events happening to a loved one...
Read More
Stories of Hope

What They Say

Need more

Other Mental Health Issues

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua ut enim ad minim veniam.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua ut enim ad minim veniam.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua ut enim ad minim veniam.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit,

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua ut enim ad minim veniam. sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua ut enim ad minim veniam.

Read More

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua ut enim ad minim veniam.
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua ut enim ad minim veniam.
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua ut enim ad minim veniam.
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua ut enim ad minim veniam.

Have Any Other Question?

    We seek to ensure that all people with mental illness including people with past experiences of mental illness are supported by the association.