Client With Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

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Client with Post traumatic Stress disorder

Client with Post traumatic Stress disorder


Although Post Traumatic Stress disorder (P.T.S.D.) was not given a clinical name until 1980, it had been around for many years before that. It was known as shell shock, battle fatigue, accident neurosis, and post-rape syndrome until the American Psychological Association gave it a formal name. P.T.S.D. is defined as an anxiety disorder in which fear and related symptoms continue to be experienced long after a traumatic event(Stress Injury to health Trauma 2004 ).

Patients with PTSD often suffer from one or more of the following symptoms; intrusive memories, flashbacks, hyper vigilance, disturbed sleep, avoidance of traumatic stimuli, physiological hyper-responsively, numbing of emotions, and social dysfunction. Untreated, PTSD symptoms can last a lifetime, impairing health, damaging relationships and preventing people achieving their potential. However, prospects for recovery are good when treated correctly. According to Foa, PTSD is seen to be a 'multi-faceted disorder' that poses a number of significant notional and practical challenges with regard to achieving an accurate assessment. Several strategies may be adopted by primary health care providers to assist patients with both acute and chronic forms of PTSD and various scales exist to measure severity and frequency of PTSD symptoms(Naggy, Marshall 2002).

Because not every traumatised person develops PTSD, researchers are still trying to understand what causes, and increases, the risk of developing PTSD. So far, most of our knowledge of PTSD comes from war survivors, people who lived through concentration camps, and victims of combat from WWII, Korean and Vietnam wars (Bootzin & Ross 1988, p.176). Based on research to date it is believed that PTSD is caused by a combination of several factors including social, biological and psychological and each help contribute to our understanding of the disorder(Lange, Cabaltica 2000).


Post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or "burn-out" has always been and issue for paramedics and other emergency responders, but it wasn't recognized or even considered to be a significant problem. The causes of PTSD range from a major life-threatening incident (e.g. war, act of violence, accident and disaster) to a prolonged series of events (e.g. bullying, harassment, abuse, living with a violent partner). PTSD was introduced in the 1980s, before then it has been known by many names including shell shock, war neurosis, soldier's heart, gross stress reaction, transient situation disturbance, combat stress, combat fatigue, battle fatigue, stress breakdown, traumatic neurosis. In the previous version of DSM (DSM-III) a criterion of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder was for the sufferer to have faced a single major life-threatening event; this criterion was present because a) it was thought that PTSD could not be a result of "normal" events such as bereavement, business failure, interpersonal conflict, bullying, harassment, stalking, marital disharmony, working for the emergency services, etc, and b) most of the research on PTSD had been undertaken with people who had suffered a threat to life (e.g. combat veterans, especially from Vietnam, victims of accident, disaster, and acts of ...
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