Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can occur after a traumatic event has been experienced.
Symptoms vary but can include panic attacks and visual and/or emotional flashbacks where you re-experience the event to varying degrees. This can appear in nightmares, night panic attacks or just the emotional experience of the event without any visual component.
PTSD can happen immediately after an event but some people can have a delayed response after the initial trauma of months or even years.
Your exposure resulting in PTSD can happen in some of these ways:
- Directly experiencing the traumatic event
- Witnessing the event happening to others
- Learning someone close to you has experienced or was threatened by a traumatic event
- Exposure to details of traumatic events repeatedly (e.g. if you are a first responder to the scene of traumatic events)
CPTSD – Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder often occurs during childhood and is when the traumatic event or situation is not limited to just one single event but is repeated over and over again over a long period of time.