Post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), also known as shell shock or battle fatigue, occurs when the brain struggles to deal with anxious feelings and thoughts after experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event or series of events. PTSD is often associated with veterans, but 50% of all people will experience a traumatic event at least once in their lifetime, and 20% of those people will develop PTSD.
After experiencing a traumatic event, such as being in a major car accident or being the victim of a burglary, it is entirely normal to react with shock, anger, nervousness, fear, and possibly even guilt. Typically, these reactions subside over time. However, a person may continue to experience intense feelings and have disturbing thoughts long after the trauma has passed, which interferes with their daily lives. In that case, they may have PTSD and should seek psychiatric treatment.
PTSD is not diagnosed immediately after exposure to trauma. Rather, a person may be diagnosed with PTSD if they still experience symptoms months after a traumatic event. Mental health professionals diagnose PTSD based on the following symptoms, behaviors, and conditions as listed and defined in the DSM-5:
Alterations in cognition and mood
Alterations in arousal and reactivity
These symptoms can lead to significant impairment in a person’s life, whether socially, professionally, or otherwise, and may require psychiatric treatment.
Psychological and biological reactions to trauma can be intense and painful. Some people live their lives with few or no symptoms, while for others, the intensity and pain persist. Traumatic psychological wounds can be challenging to treat with medication alone, so the most effective treatment usually involves both medication management and psychotherapy.
Talkiatry may recommend medication management as a tool to help manage your reaction to trauma. Medication can help people dealing with PTSD control and relieve their symptoms, allowing them to participate more effectively in psychotherapy.
Antidepressants, including SNRIs and SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors and serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors), are commonly used to treat PTSD. Talkiatry may also prescribe medications to manage anxiety, physical agitation, nightmares, and sleep disorders.
Typically, our PTSD specialists will recommend the use of medications alongside various psychotherapy treatments, such as:
With PTSD, the risk of developing a depressive disorder is three to five times greater. Therefore, we encourage you to take our online assessment to match with one of our psychiatrists who has experience treating your diagnosis. With Talkiatry’s PTSD specialists, you'll receive the personalized care you need.
Our providers offer comprehensive mental health solutions that are local, accessible, and in-network. Talkiatry connects the traditional way of treating PTSD with modern technology, scale, and efficiency to provide a healing environment that provides the most effective outcomes.
If your feelings and reactions to a traumatic event have become unmanageable for you, we're here to help! At Talkiatry, we have psychiatrists and nurse practitioners trained in various modalities that specialize in treating PTSD. Our free assessment will give you a preliminary diagnosis and provide more information about your symptoms. Then, based on that diagnosis, we'll match you with one of our psychiatrists who can provide you with the treatment you need to manage PTSD.
Talkiatry is a mental health practice, and our clinicians review everything we write. However, articles are never a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you think you may need mental health help, talk to a psychiatrist. If you or someone you know may be in danger, call 911 or the National Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988 right away.