National PTSD Awareness Day in Utah
Tomorrow is National PTSD Awareness Day and it’s for more than just those who served.
PTSD or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is defined by the Huntsman Mental Health Institute as “a mental health condition that some people develop months to years after experiencing one traumatic event (e.g., natural disaster, acts of violence, accidents) or several traumatic events over time.”
There is a common misconception about PTSD being a condition that could only result from war. That is 100 percent untrue.
It’s a challenging mental health condition that can heavily impact everyday life.
Here are the symptoms HMHI lists:
- Frightening thoughts
Internal and external avoidance
- Drinking to not think about the experience
- Staying away from people, places, or things that remind you of the experience
Changes in cognition and mood
- Trouble remembering the event
- Seeing other people as dangerous
- Feelings of guilt and blame about the event towards yourself or someone else
- Disassociation (zoning out or feeling like you’re in a dream)
Arousal and reactivity
- Easily startled
- Feeling anxious
- Difficulty sleeping
- Angry outbursts
According to PTSD United, 8% of Americans (about 24.4 million people) have PTSD at “any given time”. It’s also more common for women to develop PTSD.
So, how do you observe National PTSD Awareness Day?
Reaching out to someone you know who suffers from PTSD and just checking in is a great option. You could also just research the disorder to try and get a better understanding of it. This way, you’ll have a basic knowledge of what those who do suffer go through.