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Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is characterized by the re-living of traumatic events through such things as flashbacks or nightmares. It involves not only extreme anxiety but also emotional numbing as we try and deal with the stress induced by the traumatic event(s).

Whether experienced personally or as a witness, traumatic events can have a very powerful effect on us. They hit home in a very real, imminent and shocking way just how vulnerable we really are. Commonly associated with war veterans (with good reason) we don't have to experience the horrors of war to develop PTSD. Anything that induces hurt, fear and shock can do the same.

Constant abuse (both physical and mental) can be a very common cause.

With such a threat to our existence, flashbacks and nightmares represent our mind trying to deal with the situation, to re-live it and come to some peace over it.

Unlike many anxiety disorders where the dangers are usually generated in our mind, with PTSD the danger is real (we have actually experienced it) and it is out there. A very real threat to our survival remains unresolved. This is why it is so intolerable.


"A powerful shock that may have long-lasting effects"

(The Collins English Dictionary)


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