Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a chronic mental health disorder that can occur in people who have experienced or witnessed a traumatic event. PTSD impacts millions of people every year. We are all different, so not everyone who shares the same trauma will develop PTSD. However, anyone can develop PTSD at any age. For most people who go through a traumatic event, symptoms usually get better within a relatively short period. When symptoms worsen, last for one month or longer, and interfere with daily functioning, individuals should seek help from a PTSD treatment program at Harmony Hills. Contact us at 855.494.0357 to learn more about the benefits of PTSD treatment.
How PTSD Affects You Physically
PTSD is most commonly associated with service people who have been in combat, but the scope of PTSD is much more far-reaching. Anyone can develop PTSD after having experiences ranging from childhood trauma to a car accident to the sudden loss of a loved one. It is not fully understood why some people develop PTSD and others do not, even when they share a common traumatic experience. The reasons likely lie in a combination of genetic, biological, and environmental factors.
Individuals with PTSD experience various psychological symptoms, including depression, anxiety, intrusive thoughts, flashbacks, and recurring nightmares. There is also a wide range of physical symptoms associated with PTSD. Research indicates that, compared to people without PTSD, individuals with PTSD are more likely to experience health issues such as:
- Increased blood pressure and heart-related disease
- Muscle tension
- Sleep disorders and fatigue
- Nausea and digestive disorders
- Joint and back pain
- Respiratory system-related problems and disease
Compared to the general public, individuals with PTSD have significantly higher substance abuse and addiction rates and are at higher risk for risk-taking behaviors and suicide. At Harmony Hills, we recognize the need for treating co-occurring substance use disorders in conjunction with PTSD treatment.
The Importance of Trauma Treatment
Trauma is an emotional reaction to a distressing experience. Untreated trauma can result in substance abuse, addiction, and mental health disorders including, depression, anxiety, eating disorders, bipolar disorder, and PTSD. Trauma can be caused by sudden, unexpected events or by prolonged exposure to harmful situations. Examples of traumatic events include:
- Physical, emotional, or sexual abuse
- Experiencing or witnessing violence
- Serious accidents or life-threatening illnesses
- Experiencing or witnessing natural disasters
- Physical or sexual assault
- Living in or participating in a combat zone
- Witnessing or being the victim of domestic violence
While everyone reacts differently, events are perceived as traumatic to the degree that they threaten an individual’s sense of security. Traumatic events signal our natural fight or flight instinct, which raises cortisol levels. Cortisol is crucial to the body’s stress response and is designed to be a short-lived reaction. In individuals with PTSD, cortisol levels become altered, sometimes too high, and sometimes too low, leading to psychological and physical impairments.
The highly knowledgeable and experienced treatment team at Harmony Hills understands the impacts of trauma and how they often result in a chain reaction of substance abuse that exacerbates PTSD symptoms. We offer mental health treatment programs to help you or your loved one overcome these challenges.
Find Relief in Harmony Hills’ PTSD Treatment Program
The PTSD treatment program at Harmony Hills provides evidence-based therapies like cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing therapy (EMDR) that are proven to be effective in treating PTSD.
Therapy for PTSD can be life-changing. Often, substance abuse and addiction are symptoms of mental health disorders like PTSD. At Harmony Hills, we know about these connections and treat them simultaneously for the most effective and lasting results.
If you or a loved one is suffering from unhealed trauma resulting in PTSD, help is available in the trauma therapy and PTSD treatment programs Harmony Hills. Contact us now at 855.494.0357.