NHS Choices explains that Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder caused by very stressful, frightening or distressing events.
The type of events that can cause PTSD include:
- serious road accidents
- violent personal assaults, such as sexual assault, mugging or robbery
- prolonged sexual abuse, violence or severe neglect
- witnessing violent deaths
- military combat
- being held hostage
- terrorist attacks
- natural disasters, such as severe floods, earthquakes or tsunamis
PTSD can develop immediately after someone experiences a disturbing event or it can occur weeks, months or even years later.
PTSD is estimated to affect about 1 in every 3 people who have a traumatic experience, but it's not clear exactly why some people develop the condition and others don't. You can read more about this on www.nhs.uk.
If you are a young person and believe you may be experiencing PTSD symptoms, please speak with your GP and/or your School Health Nurse.
Your GP will need to carry out an assessment with you to work out how they can best support you.
If this is a severe, complex and enduring concern which is difficult to resolve, your GP may consider (with your consent) referring you to the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) for an opportunity to speak this over with someone who will not judge you, but help you build confidence in your day to day living.
If you are a parent of a child under five and you are concerned they may be expericencing PTSD, please discuss this with your health visitor.
CCHP services which may be involved:
- School Health Nurse
- Health Visitor
- Child and Adolescent Mental Health (CAMHS)
For more information about a condition, please visit NHS Choices.