10 Common Causes of PTSD
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) gets a lot of press, especially regarding military veterans who return from combat. For example, it’s estimated that 11-20% of veterans who served in the recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have PTSD in a given year.
However, you don’t have to see combat in the military to be vulnerable to PTSD, a potentially debilitating condition that can lead to intrusive thoughts and flashbacks, avoidance of reminders of the traumatic event, feelings of guilt, a sense of being on edge at all times, being easily startled, anxiety or depression, problems sleeping, as well as other symptoms.
You may be surprised to discover that PTSD can affect anyone—any ethnicity, nationality, or age—although women are 2-3 times more likely to develop the condition than men. Approximately 3.5% of adults in the U.S. are affected by the condition, and about 7-8 people out of 100 will have PTSD in their lifetime.
What’s even more surprising is that in some cases, you don’t even have to be involved first-hand in a traumatic event. Simply hearing about a traumatic event or repetitive viewing of violent news stories on television can increase the risk of PTSD.
10 Types of Traumatic Events That Can Lead to PTSD
- Military combat
- Rape or other physical assault
- Childhood abuse
- Natural disasters
- Automobile accidents
- Sudden death of a loved one
- Seeing someone get seriously hurt or killed
- Being held at gunpoint
- Terrorist attack
- Mass shooting
Not everybody who is exposed to a traumatic event will develop PTSD. Certain things can make you more vulnerable to the condition, including having little or no social support in the wake of a traumatic event, as well as coping with additional stresses due to injuries, the death of a loved one, or the loss of your home.
What the Media Gets Wrong About PTSD
Most media articles talk about PTSD as a psychological problem, but that isn’t accurate. Although it does cause psychological consequences, PTSD is, in fact, a brain disorder. Brain imaging studies using a technology called SPECT show PTSD is associated with changes in the brain. Without brain imaging, PTSD is often misdiagnosed because symptoms overlap with other conditions, such as traumatic brain injury. Research shows that brain scans help differentiate PTSD from TBI to help you get an accurate diagnosis and more effective treatment.
If you or a loved one has experienced a traumatic event and is experiencing symptoms of PTSD, it’s important to seek help. At Amen Clinics, we perform brain scans using a technology called SPECT as part of a complete evaluation to diagnose and treat PTSD with the least toxic, most effective solutions.
Don’t let PTSD steal your life. Call one of our patient care specialists at 888-288-9834 to see how Amen Clinics can help you or schedule a visit online.