Posts Tagged PTSD

[WEB PAGE] 7 Unexpected Signs You Have High-Functioning PTSD

When most people think of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), they envision debilitating anxiety and depression that seems apparent from the outside. But some people exhibit signs of high-functioning PTSD, and they might not be as obvious as you thought. Some people can experience PTSD and still manage to get through their day-to-day lives, but that doesn’t mean their symptoms don’t deserve to be looked at or that they have to live with those emotional hurdles forever.

“What many don’t realize is that PTSD is not a direct result of trauma,” John Hamilton, LMFT, LADC and Chief Clinical Outreach Officer at Mountainside Treatment Center, tells Bustle. “It’s not just the experience that results in PTSD, but how the person responds to that experience internally. It depends on how the person processes and reacts to the traumatic event. A lot of times, an individual will disconnect from themselves and have a hard time being present as a result. An individual with high-functioning PTSD is someone who struggles with the symptoms of this mental illness, but not to the extent where it interferes with everyday activities and relationships.”

The first step to getting the help you need is recognizing that you might be a high-functioning person living with PTSD. Discussing these symptoms with your therapist can help you get a diagnosis and figure out the best forms of treatment. Here are seven unexpected signs you have high-functioning PTSD, according to experts.

1
You’re Always Busy

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle

People with high-functioning PTSD tend to be workaholics or find some other way to keep their time occupied. “Staying busy all the time allows the individual with high-functioning PTSD to not have to think about the painful memories,” trauma therapist Ginger Poag, MSW, LCSW, CEMDR tells Bustle. “The trauma and memories may be too overwhelming for the person that they rather stay busy to keep their mind off of what happened.” Of course, having a packed schedule doesn’t mean you automatically suffer from PTSD, but if you notice you may be avoiding confronting some traumatic events, it might be time to speak with a therapist.

2
You Have Extreme Emotional Reactions

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle

When you are experiencing PTSD, your fight-or-flight reactions intensify. When your body feels unsafe, you live in a state of hyper-vigilance. “This can lead to having an extreme emotional reaction (tears, feelings of hopelessness, catastrophizing) to stressful or anxious situations, especially if this reaction is much more intense than what you felt before the trauma,” trauma therapist Michele Quintin, LCSW tells Bustle. Once again, the best way to deal with these emotions is to seek the help of a professional.

3
You Cancel Plans

Hannah Burton/Bustle

“It is common for individuals with high-functioning PTSD to cancel plans they had made with friends,” says Poag. “The person wants to go out and have a good time, but when it actually comes down to going, the individual feels too overwhelmed, and does not want to go out and socialize with a lot of people. We may start to see social anxiety develop.”

4
You Have Insomnia

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle

Difficulty getting to sleep at night is another symptom of high-functioning PTSD. “The individual is exhausted from pushing themselves all day both mentally and physically,” says Poag. “It takes a lot of energy to maintain the image of everything is together and fine. When the individual goes to lay down for the night, they often start to ruminate about the days events or what is coming up in the future. Even though the individual is tired, the brain is still active, and they are not able to sleep.” Insomnia can have many causes, but if difficulty falling asleep seems to be the result of anxiety, a therapist can help you.

5
You Have Digestive Issues

Ashley Batz/Bustle

Many people with PTSD experience digestive issues due to the mental stress that they are under. “The brain sends signals to the stomach that the brain is under a great deal of stress, and as a result we start to see digestive issues and stomach pain,” says Poag. Like insomnia, digestive issues can be caused by a variety of factors, so if you’re questioning where these problems may be coming from, a trip to the doctor’s can help clarify.

6
You Are Experiencing Disordered Eating

Ashley Batz/Bustle

“An eating disorder may also be seen in high-functioing PTSD,” says Poag. “The individual may be trying to numb theirselves from the painful memory of the trauma or release the intense emotions they have built up inside.”

If you’ve gone through a traumatic event and are experiencing these symptoms, consult a therapist who can help give you the proper diagnosis and treatment plan.

via 7 Unexpected Signs You Have High-Functioning PTSD

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[Abstract + References] Neurostimulation in Anxiety Disorders, Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder – Book chapter

Abstract

Many pharmacological treatments were proved effective in the treatment of panic disorder (PD), generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), social anxiety disorder (SAD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD); still many patients do not achieve remission with these treatments. Neurostimulation techniques have been studied as promising alternatives or augmentation treatments to pharmacological and psychological therapies. The most studied neurostimulation method for anxiety disorders, PTSD, and OCD was repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS). This neurostimulation technique had the highest level of evidence for GAD. There were also randomized sham-controlled trials indicating that rTMS may be effective in the treatment of PTSD and OCD, but there were conflicting findings regarding these two disorders. There is indication that rTMS may be effective in the treatment of panic disorder, but the level of evidence is low. Deep brain stimulation (DBS) was most studied for treatment of OCD, but the randomized sham-controlled trials had mixed findings. Preliminary findings indicate that DBS could be affective for PTSD. There is weak evidence indicating that electroconvulsive therapy, transcranial direct current stimulation, vagus nerve stimulation, and trigeminal nerve stimulation could be effective in the treatment of anxiety disorders, PTSD, and OCD. Regarding these disorders, there is no support in the current literature for the use of neurostimulation in clinical practice. Large high-quality studies are warranted.

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via Neurostimulation in Anxiety Disorders, Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder | SpringerLink

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[Infographic] “get over it” – PTSD

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[TED-Ed] The psychology of post-traumatic stress disorder

Many of us will experience some kind of trauma during our lifetime. Sometimes, we escape with no long-term effects. But for millions of people, those experiences linger, causing symptoms like flashbacks, nightmares, and negative thoughts that interfere with everyday life. Joelle Rabow Maletis details the science behind post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD.

via The psychology of post-traumatic stress disorder – Joelle | TED-Ed

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[BLOG POST] Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder – Managing Mental Health in Stressful Times – Collection Spotlight from the NARIC

Posted on June 10, 2020 by naricspotlight

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that some people develop after experiencing or witnessing a life-threatening event, such as combat, an accident, a disaster, or an assault. PTSD can be a disabling mental health condition for these individuals. Research has shown it can make it difficult to find and maintain a job, interact with family and friends, and participate in the community. PTSD is often associated with military veterans, but anyone who experiences a traumatic event could be at risk of developing the condition. For example, people with acquired disabilities such as spinal cord injury or burn injuries may experience PTSD in connection with their injuries. Some researchers are concerned that the current coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) may lead to an increase in PTSD among both frontline healthcare workers and those who survive the virus.

Resources are available from the NIDILRR grantee community and from national and local agencies and organizations to help people with PTSD find treatment and support.

PTSD and Traumatic Injuries

People with traumatic injuries such as spinal cord injury (SCI), traumatic brain injury (TBI), and burn injury can experience PTSD as a result of their injuries. Learn more about:

Tech Solutions for PTSD

Three apps supported by the App Factory at the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center for Community Living, Health, and Function (LiveWell RERC) may offer help in managing PTSD symptoms:

  • BreatheWell Wear app for Android Wear smartwatches is designed to assist people with mild TBI and PTSD in managing stress through diaphragmatic breathing.  
  • SwapMyMood is a mobile app developed for the iOS operating system. It is designed to assist people with brain injury to engage in problem solving and emotion regulation.
  • SmartHome Stress Assist (under development) is a system that leverages the Amazon Echo and commodity smart home technologies to assist military service members with traumatic brain injury and PTSD in managing the onset of post-traumatic stress episodes.

The National PTSD Center at the Department of Veterans Affairs has many apps and tools that provide self-help, education, and support following treatment.

  • Mobile apps for self-help, treatment companions, and related issues such as parenting and smoking cessation.
  • Treatment Decision Aid that can be used by anyone to learn about PTSD, compare effective treatment options, and take action to start treatment. Resources specific to military personnel are clearly indicated. 

PTSD and COVID-19

As noted above, some researchers are concerned about the impact of ongoing stress on healthcare workers on the frontline of the pandemic, as well as the mental health of those who survive the virus. The National Center for PTSD has a collection of information and resources to support self-care, the work of providers, and community efforts. Resources for Everyone includes the COVID Coach mobile app, designed to help build resilience, manage stress, and increase well-being with tools to stay connected, work from home, navigate parenting or caregiving, and stay healthy. The collection has a long list of Resources for Healthcare Workers and Responders and for Employers and Community Leaders.

These are just a few examples of resources available to help people with PTSD manage stress, find support, and find treatment during this very difficult time. Learn more about resources, tools, and research on managing stress, staying productive, and staying healthy in our collection of COVID-19 Resources from the NIDILRR Grantee Community.

Explore More Research

NARIC’s REHABDATA database lists more than 1,300 publications on PTSD, including peer reviewed articles, books, and consumer materials. Try one of these targeted searches:

If you need assistance in finding treatment and support in your community, contact your community Information and Referral center or the National Helpline from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

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[Infographic] DO I HAVE PTSD?

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[Infographic] PTSD IS ?

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[Infographic] Symptoms of PTSD

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[TED Talk] Understanding PTSD’s Effects on Brain, Body, and Emotions | Janet Seahorn | TEDxCSU – YouTube

PTSD disrupts the lives of average individuals as well as combat veterans who have served their country. The person experiencing the trauma often then impacts the lives of his/her family, friends, and workplaces. PTSD does not distinguish between race, age or gender and often goes undiagnosed. Even with proper diagnosis, many individuals do not know where to turn to get help. Society needs to understand the aftermath of trauma especially combat trauma and how to prepare for warriors when they return home. Janet Seahorn, Ph.D has been a teacher, administrator, and consultant for over thirty years. She currently teaches a variety of classes on neuroscience and literacy as an adjunct professor for Colorado State University in Fort Collins, CO. Jan has a Ph.D in Human Development and Organizational Systems. Her background includes an in-depth understanding of human development and neuroscience research as well as effective practices in organizational systems and change. She conducts workshops on the neuroscience of learning and memory, the effects of “at-risk” environments (i.e., poverty), brain development, and researched-based instructional practices. Jan has worked with many organizations in the business and educational communities in creating and sustaining healthy, dynamic environments. Dr. Seahorn has researched and studied the effects of trauma on the brain and how excessive or extreme trauma can impact changes in the brain’s neuro network and how that change impacts behaviors in s This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at http://ted.com/tedx

via Understanding PTSD’s Effects on Brain, Body, and Emotions | Janet Seahorn | TEDxCSU – YouTube

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[ARTICLE] An acceptance and commitment therapy-based intervention for PTSD following traumatic brain injury: a case study

Introduction: A case study is presented to illustrate the management of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in the context of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), using an Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) based approach. A 48-year-old female presented to Neuropsychology with cognitive difficulties, significant distress and trauma symptoms following a car accident. ACT is a third wave cognitive-behavioral approach aimed at increasing psychological flexibility as a means of reducing distress: it is a trans-diagnostic model that may be suited to the complex and multi-factorial difficulties experienced by this client group.

Methods: A guided self-help approach based on ACT was implemented by the client working with a Clinical Psychologist within a Community Neuropsychology service, over 12 appointments.

Results: Outcome measures were administered pre and post-intervention as well as at three and then 12-month follow-ups. Improvements were seen across ACT outcome measures, psychological measures and quality of life ratings and were consistent with subjective reporting.

Discussion: Outcomes were positive in all domains post-intervention and at follow-up, indicating that this may be a feasible intervention for PTSD following TBI.

via An acceptance and commitment therapy-based intervention for PTSD following traumatic brain injury: a case study: Brain Injury: Vol 0, No 0

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