Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

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PTSD can lead to a risk of suicide. Getty Images
PTSD can lead to a risk of suicide. Getty Images

Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) can occur following a life-threatening event like military combat, natural disasters, terrorist incidents, serious accidents, or violent personal assaults like rape. Most survivors of trauma return to normal given a little time. However, some people have stress reactions that don't go away on their own, or may even get worse over time. These individuals may develop PTSD.

People who suffer from PTSD often suffer from nightmares, flashbacks, difficulty sleeping, and feeling emotionally numb. These symptoms can significantly impair a person's daily life.

More information on PTSD.

PTSD is marked by clear physical and psychological symptoms. It often has symptoms like depression, substance abuse, problems of memory and cognition, and other physical and mental health problems. The disorder is also associated with difficulties in social or family life, including occupational instability, marital problems, family discord, and difficulties in parenting.

If you are suffering from PTSD, or know someone who is, you should contact the VA for assistance.

Each VA medical center has PTSD specialists who provide treatment for Veterans with PTSD. Plus, the VA provides nearly 200 specialized PTSD treatment programs. A referral is usually needed to access the specialty programs.

The VA offers several PTSD treatment options, including medical, mental health, and family services.

Check out the VA's PTSD website for details.

NOTE: If you are in crisis dial 911 or 800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255).

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