Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a physical and psychological condition caused by exposure to extremely frightening or distressing events and can affect anyone. It is a normal, human reaction to an abnormal and traumatic experience. It is commonly associated with those who have served within the armed forces, particularly in a combat role but it can just as easily affect “blue light” services such as police, firefighters and ambulance crews and civilians exposed to traumas such as abuse, cataclysmic events or being involved in or witnessing severe accidents.
The symptoms of PTSD usually start soon after the traumatic event, but sometimes it can be many months or even years before symptoms develop and sufferers can endure years of mental distress never even realising that they have the condition. Sadly, many turn to self-medication with drugs or alchol and others feel unable to continue and end their lives.
It is over 30 years since the Falklands conflict, a conflict in which 255 British service personnel died. It is well known that over 300 service personnel have now taken their own lives since the conflict ended, many displaying symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
Talking2Minds are committed as a charity to helping anyone experiencing the symptoms of PTSD, irrespective of when or how they developed them.
Bob Paxman former 22 SAS and the dedicated team were awarded the Mental Health Hero awards by the Deputy Prime Minister Rt Hon Mr Clegg MP in February 2015.
An increasing problem
Today there is overwhelming evidence that UK troops fighting in the various areas of conflict all over the world are suffering from PTSD at ever-increasing levels. The number of individuals being diagnosed with PTSD and associated symptoms has increased by 53% in the last few years.
Levels of PTSD in the wider population have been less well documented but PTSD does not differentiate between military or civilian. Anyone encountering a severe trauma can be affected.
We understand PTSD because…
Many of our Personal Development Coaches are former sufferers, including our founder, Rob Paxman (ex-22 SAS).
Having experienced the damaging effects of PTSD himself, he decided to set up the charity to help other who like him had been told that that the symptoms would be there “for life” and he had to learn to live with it.
“I refused to accept that I would experience the symptoms of PTSD for the rest of my life and having worked hard to come up with a therapy that really worked for me I am passionate about helping others find their way through PTSD too.”
Signs and symptoms
- Flashbacks, nightmares or night-time terrors
- Feelings of depression
- Isolation, loneliness and confusion
- Insomnia and irritability
- Hyper-alertness and hyper vigilance
- Inappropriate anger
- Excessive drink or drug use
- Suicidal thoughts
- Self harm or harming others
- Severe mood swings and aggression
- Having loved ones commenting that you are somehow behaving differently from before i.e. “out of character”
Typically PTSD can be triggered by traumatic events such as:
- Military combat situations
- Sexual or physical abuse
- Extreme physical assault
- Terrorist attacks
- Serious accidents – such as car crashes
- Disasters, such as fires, floods, or earthquakes etc
- Any event which an individual experiences as traumatic such as a bereavement of a loved one
After the event, it is normal to feel confused, angry or scared however, if these feelings don’t go away or they get worse, you may be suffering from PTSD.
Not everyone witnessing or experiencing a traumatic event will develop PTSD. Individuals differ. How likely you are to develop PTSD depends on many factors such as how close you were to the event, how much personal control you had over the circumstances, how strong your reaction was, how intense was the trauma, how long it lasted, and whether you were injured or lost someone close to you.Please contact us if you or a loved one are experiencing the symptoms of PTSD.
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You can call 07917126708 and speak to the Talking 2 Minds course coordinator directly.
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