If a traumatic event you’ve experienced, witnessed or witnessed via news media is causing you extreme and lasting stress, you may have a treatable stress disorder.
Do You Have a Stress Disorder?
According to the American Psychological Association (APA), anyone experiencing any of the following 12 symptoms for longer than 1 month should talk to a mental health professional for a stress disorder assessment.
Signs of a Stress Disorder:
- Insomnia or changes in appetite
- Feeling hyper-vigilant, or on edge all the time (easily startled)
- Feeling depressed or sad a lot of the time – having little energy
- Being unable to remember the traumatic event
- Feeling like you can’t concentrate or make decisions, feeling scatterbrained
- Feeling angry or irritable
- Feeling like you can’t connect with others; feeling emotionally deadened
- Finding yourself crying all of a sudden or feeling like there is no hope
- Avoiding people places or things that trigger memories of the trauma
- When something triggers a memory of the trauma, finding yourself feeling afraid or anxious
- Experiencing exaggerated worry about the safety and well being of those you love
- Experiencing reoccurring nightmares or thoughts about the trauma
If you think that you might have a stress disorder, talk to a mental health professional for an accurate diagnosis and possible treatment. Untreated stress disorders like PTSD do not necessarily get better in time; in fact, they can sometimes get worse. Fortunately, stress disorder treatments are available, minimally intrusive and very effective.
Read PTSD Facts to get a better understanding of stress disorders.
Page last updated Aug 05, 2010