Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (C-PTSD) refer to a psychological injury that can occur when a person experiences or witnesses a traumatic event that involves death or threatened death, actual or threatened serious injury, or threatened sexual violation.

What is the difference between PTSD & C-PTSD? 

PTSD is generally related to a single traumatic event. For example: 

  • Witnessing or experiencing a serious accident
  • Witnessing or experiencing physical or sexual assault
  • Robbery
  • Combat exposure 

C-PTSD is related to a series of events, or one prolonged event that lasts over a period of months or even years. For example: 

  • Experiencing childhood abuse or neglect
  • Living under any oppressive conditions long-term where you felt entirely powerless.
  • Combat exposure 
  • Bring a prisoner of war, or being a victim of human trafficking

What are the symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress?

PTSD symptoms are generally fall into the following 4 main categories:

Intrusive memories:

  • Nightmares
  • Flashbacks and dissociative flashbacks
  • Fearful thoughts 

Avoidance symptoms:

  • Avoiding places, activities or people that remind you of the traumatic event.

Arousal and reactivity symptoms:

  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Always being on guard for danger
  • Hypersensitivity to possible dangers
  • Feeling tense and anxious

Symptoms that affect mood and thinking:

  • Inability to remember some aspects of the trauma
  • Feeling disconnected from your faith or questioning your belief systems.
  • Feelings of detachment and estrangement from others and emotionally and mentally numb.

*PTSD symptoms usually start soon after the traumatic event, but they may not appear until months or years later. They may also be triggered by a stressful event. If the symptoms last longer than four weeks, cause you great distress, or interfere with your work or home life, you may have PTSD.

Do I have PTSD? 

PTSD can only be diagnosed by a licensed mental health professional trained in the use of the American Psychological Association’s (APA) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual.

What can I do if I think I have PTSD?

Speak with a mental health professional. 

Schedule your appointment today!

PTSD treatment:

There are several treatment options for trauma, which include, but are not limited to: Talk Therapy, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, and Cognitive Behavior Therapy.

Sources:

http://www.ptsd.va.gov/professional/PTSD-overview/complex-ptsd.asp
Leonard, J. (2018, August 28). “What to know about complex PTSD.” Medical News Today. Retrieved from
https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/322886.php.

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