What Can Cause PTSD?

What Can Cause PTSD?

When someone is a trauma victim or witness something traumatizing, it can lead to PTSD. Unfortunately, there are many ways to experience trauma, some far more common than others in today’s world. The symptoms of PTSD are overwhelming and complex symptoms that stem directly from trauma. Although many people link PTSD to a specific profession (soldiers, emergency service workers, police officers), trauma is not unique to one particular demographic or profession. Trauma and the events that may lead to PTSD can happen to anyone regardless of age, gender, or occupation.

What is PTSD?

PTSD is a complex mental health condition resulting from trauma. The trauma can occur under many circumstances. It may stem from childhood traumas such as abuse, loss of a parent, or divorce for some individuals. For others, it might be related to witnessing or experiencing natural disasters, violence, or traumatic events as part of one’s day-to-day employment. It is important to note that one does not need to be the victim of trauma or direct witness to trauma to develop PTSD. Someone can develop post-traumatic stress disorder by learning about traumatic experiences that occurred to someone they love, such as a parent or sibling.

What are the signs of PTSD?

Struggles with PTSD can occur in people of all ages. In many cases, the symptoms of PTSD will look similar across most age groups. Someone experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms will feel as though there is no escape from their trauma. The events that led to the trauma and the trauma itself will replay in their mind, regardless of how hard they try to shut them out. To avoid reliving their experience or feeling the painful emotions that occur from reliving, someone with PTSD will consciously avoid situations, people, or places that could remind them of their traumatic event or experience. Reliving can also occur at night. You may experience vivid dreams or nightmares that feel overwhelmingly real and extremely scary. These dreams inevitably lead to sleeping challenges and other difficulties that can make functioning in one’s day-to-day environment difficult.

Although everyone will experience PTSD symptoms differently, many signs of PTSD occur in varying degrees of severity across most cases. These include:

  • Frequent anxiety or anxious feelings.
  • Difficulties focusing at work, school, or at home.
  • Experiencing nightmares or flashbacks.
  • Acting aggressively or impulsively.
  • Acting or expressing “emotional numbness.”
  • Actively avoiding people, places, or situations that risk leading to recall of the trauma.
  • Overreacting to everyday noises or sounds (clapping hands, popping balloons, or slamming doors).
  • Exhibiting hypervigilance (always being “on guard” for something bad to happen).

What Causes PTSD?

PTSD or post-traumatic stress disorder can arise from several different forms of trauma. Post-traumatic stress disorder often occurs after someone directly witnesses or personally experiences a traumatic event. The idea of trauma or a traumatic event may differ for different people. Some common examples of trauma that can lead to PTSD include abuse, serious injury, illness, natural disasters, assault, and experiencing acts of terrorism.

One can also develop PTSD after learning about a friend or loved one experiencing trauma. What might be considered traumatic will vary from person to person, but each unique experience can lead to complex mental health challenges requiring careful and compassionate treatment to overcome.

Finding PTSD Treatment Near Me

Many people who experience a traumatic event experience lasting mental health struggles. Without mental health therapy, the experience of trauma can lead to a range of physical and mental health struggles that can worsen over time. It is not uncommon for symptoms to become so overwhelming that individuals turn to substances to reduce the intensity and severity of their symptoms. Unfortunately, the relief provided by substance use does not last long, and symptoms often return stronger than before. Seeking professional treatment help is the safest and most effective way to safely put struggles with PTSD in the past.Learning how to manage PTSD without turning to self-medication requires comprehensive treatment in an environment where the program focuses on your specific needs. Everyone who begins therapy for mental health or addiction-related illness starts at a different place in their journey. The best treatment programs are those like Relevance Recovery, where each patient works closely with their treatment team to develop a plan that focuses on all aspects of healing, including physical, emotional, and spiritual components. Let us help you as you begin your journey to healing. Contact the admissions team at Relevance Recovery today to learn more about our programs and how we can help.

What is the Relationship Between Anxiety and Alcoholism

What is the Relationship Between Anxiety and Alcoholism

Many people fear nervousness or fear occasionally but, anxiety is more than simple worry or fear. It is a persistent and ongoing struggle that interferes with your day-to-day life. Symptoms begin as early as childhood and continue into adulthood for many who struggle with anxiety. There are several types of anxiety disorders, each producing a range of symptoms. Some of these symptoms are common in most types of anxiety, whereas others are specific to the unique diagnosis.

What is Anxiety?

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) lists several types of anxiety disorders. The five most familiar people include social anxiety disorders, phobias, generalized anxiety disorders, and separation anxiety. It is possible to have one or multiple anxiety disorders. Regardless of the type of anxiety you struggle with, it is essential to seek professional help at a treatment center to safely overcome anxiety and leave treatment with the tools and skills necessary to cope with triggers without turning to substances.

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), anxiety disorders are the most common illness in the United States. Data shows that as many as 19% of the 40 million adults over age eighteen struggle with anxiety. Like addiction, anxiety disorders are treatable, yet few of those who could benefit from treatment ever seek or receive the help they need. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America (AADA) estimates that less than 37% of people with anxiety disorders get treatment.

What are the Symptoms of Anxiety?

Unlike diabetes or the flu, anxiety is not a singular condition. It is a group of related conditions with common and unique symptoms. The most common symptom experienced across all anxiety disorders is persistent and excessive fear in generally not threatening or dangerous situations.

Someone who struggles with anxiety will experience a broad range of physical and psychological symptoms. Common symptoms seen in most types of anxiety include feelings of dread, irritability, restlessness, and feelings of jumpiness or being tense. Anxiety also leads to hypervigilance. Hypervigilance is a state of always being “on the lookout” for danger or harm, even when it is unlikely to exist. Physical symptoms of anxiety will frequently include racing heart, fatigue, difficulties sleeping, shortness of breath, sweating, stomach problems, and frequent headaches.

Signs of Anxiety

Although many aspects of anxiety disorders relate to internal struggles only you can feel, there are a range of outward signs others may notice or you may notice in a friend or loved one. Common physical symptoms of anxiety may include rapid breathing, shaking, sweating, hair loss, lack of energy, fainting, and frequent stomach problems.

The psychological or emotional signs of anxiety may be harder to see from the outside. However, if you are worried a friend or loved one is struggling with anxiety, you may notice they “seem” different. Perhaps someone who was happy now seems fearful, distant, or moody. Also, you may notice your friend or loved one struggles to focus and often seems to overthink things or struggle to concentrate on day-to-day tasks. You may also notice changes in their appetite or sleeping patterns.

Finding Addiction and Mental Health Treatment Near Me

When you struggle with both a mental health condition, such as anxiety, and alcoholism, it is called a dual diagnosis or co-occurring disorder. Some statistics show that as many as half of those who struggle with a mental illness also experience symptoms related to a substance use disorder. Dual diagnosis conditions such as alcohol addiction and anxiety share many overlapping symptoms. The best opportunity for recovery is to choose a treatment program specializing in dual diagnosis treatment. When you struggle with anxiety, simple day-to-day situations or obligations can be triggering. Learning to manage triggering places, people, or events without using alcohol is a vital part of recovery. Learning about and how to use healthy coping strategies to handle triggers is an essential part of ongoing recovery and relapse prevention. If you struggle with alcoholism and anxiety, seeking help at a skilled dual-diagnosis treatment center is a vital part of your successful recovery. Contact us today if you would like to learn more about how the team at Relevance Recovery can help you start your recovery journey.

How Does Depression Relate to Addiction?

How Does Depression Relate to Addiction?

It is not uncommon for people who struggle with overwhelming symptoms stemming from a mental health condition like depression to turn to drugs or alcohol as a way to relax or reduce the intensity of their symptoms. Inevitably, chronic substance abuse can lead to new or worsening mental health symptoms. This means that using drugs and alcohol to self-medicate or manage your symptoms without seeking mental health treatment may not provide any form of lasting benefit. Conversely, it could make your condition worse.

What is Depression?

Feeling blue or “down in the dumps” from time to time is a shared experience for most people. Everyone has moments where they don’t feel happy or overwhelmingly upset about a particular situation or event. When this occurs, we usually refer to these emotions as feeling “depressed.” For many, these feelings are typically short-lived. Often, they will resolve on their own soon after the event or situation resolves. Clinical depression is different. The emotions you experience when you have depression are more than temporary feelings of sadness.

In the mental health community, depression is also referred to as major depressive disorder or clinical depression. These conditions are characterized by overwhelming symptoms of emptiness, sadness, or irritability that affect your ability to function in your day-to-day environment. Without treatment, these symptoms can become so overwhelming that they lead to a loss of function at work and home. For someone to meet the clinical diagnostic criteria for depression, these symptoms must last for a minimum of two weeks. Additionally, the symptoms you experience during depressive episodes must be different from your previous level of functioning. In other words, your symptoms must lead to a clinically significant change in mood and ability.

What are the Signs and Symptoms of Depression?

Depression is not the most common mental illness; however, it affects approximately one out of every fifteen American adults. This averages out to about 7% of adults over the age of eighteen each year. Additionally, another 16% will experience depression at some point in their life. Depression is an illness that can occur at any time; however, it generally appears in one’s early teens through mid-20s. Like other mental illnesses, depression is more likely to affect women than men. Some studies indicate more than 1/3 of women will experience major depression at some point in their life.

When someone struggles with depression, they will experience different symptoms. Depending on the individual, they may experience psychological, physical, or behavioral symptoms or a combination of all categories. It is also important to note that depression will “look” different from person to person. Frequently experienced signs and symptoms of depression often include feelings of sadness and hopelessness, loss of interest in hobbies or activities, difficulties concentration, low self-esteem, exhaustion, appetite changes, increased isolation, poor personal hygiene, and self-harm.

Can Addiction Cause Depression?

Many wonder if substance use can cause depression or, conversely, can depression cause addiction. Some research does indicate a direct link between substance use disorders and depression. Each disease can increase the risk of developing the other. Additionally, struggling with the symptoms of one or the other can worsen symptoms of both. Both conditions rank among the most prevalent mental health conditions and frequently co-occur.

Some people may experience overwhelming depression symptoms for which they turn to drugs or alcohol to manage. It is not uncommon for someone who experiences depression symptoms to turn to various substances to help reduce the intensity and severity of their symptoms. Unfortunately, this leads to reliance or dependency on drugs and alcohol to help relieve symptoms and improve mood. An article in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Psychiatry, also points out that there may be a direct link between substance use disorders and the development of major depressive disorders in some individuals.

Finding Depression Treatment in Freehold, NJ

If you or a loved one struggles with a dual diagnosis like depression and a substance use disorder, seeking dual diagnosis treatment is a vital part of your recovery. Although treatment of any kind is an essential first step, completing a treatment program that addresses the needs of only one condition increases your potential for relapse in symptoms and a return to using drugs or alcohol to cope. Not all treatment programs are designed to treat dual diagnosis conditions, and therefore, it is vital to find one where your treatment program will meet your treatment needs. Contact our Freehold, NJ rehab today to learn more about depression treatment at Relevance Recovery.