Post Traumatic Stress Disorder(PTSD)
'stressed' is just 'desserts' spelled
This is the second in our series of spotlights on particular mental health problems and aims as well as displaying the standard information on signs and symptoms treatments etc, and provide a signpost to further information and where to recieve help. In addition to include articles providing all the latest news regardining PTSD . We are particularly interested in any experiences you or your members would like to share or if you or they would like to contribute maybe with an interview or podcast please contact MHNE.
MHNE would like to thank Kevin Meares (Clinical Psychologist Newcastle Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Centre) for his invaluable contribution to these pages
A feature of these pages will be a running blog (Musings of a Most Peculiar Man) charting one service users journey through therapy
After a traumatic experience, it’s normal to feel frightened, sad, anxious, and disconnected. Usually, with time, the upset fades and you start to enjoy life again. But sometimes the trauma is so overwhelming that you find that you can’t move on. You feel stuck with a constant sense of danger and painful memories that don’t fade. If you went through a traumatic experience and are having trouble getting back to your regular life, reconnecting to others, and feeling safe again, you may be suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Take pill, remember fear, remove fear.
In the film Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, a couple have their memories of each other wiped when their relationship ends badly. But now in a real-life twist to that tale, Dutch scientists show that, in humans, a fearful memory can be erased by a drug that is usually used to control blood pressure.
Article by Kerri Smith click link to read
European researchers have identified a gene that is linked to improved memory, but also to increased risk of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).A genetic variant associated with an enhanced capacity for emotional memories is linked to increased susceptibility to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), according to new research published yesterday in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
The study, led by Dominique de Quervain of the University of Basel, used a combination of behavioural genetics and functional neuroimaging, and was carried out in three phases, two involving healthy European volunteers and the third involving Rwandan refugees who fled the 1994 civil war. The study is described in more detail in this news story for Nature. It's widely believed that memories are formed by the strengthening of connections within distributed networks of neurons. This process involves the orchestrated activity of dozens of proteins – the neurotransmitter receptors embedded in the nerve cell membranes, and their 'effectors,' the components of the biochemical signalling pathways inside the cells that are activated by the receptors. These molecules work together to make the signalling between neurons more efficient, so that synapses are strengthened.
From the Guardian Click Link to read
Susceptibility to post-traumatic stress disorder could be partially determined by gene variants, says a study.A US team looked at the DNA from 200 members of 12 families who survived the 1988 Armenian earthquake.It found those who carried two gene variants which affect the production of serotonin - which affects mood and behaviour - were more likely to display symptoms of PTSD.
The research is published in Journal of Affective Disorders.
“He was a most peculiar man” that’s what Mrs Reardon said and she should know she lived upstairs from him
(Paul Simon: A Most Peculiar Man)
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder has had a major affect on my life and mostly in a negative way, though this has been due largely to my reluctance to seek help or have any wish to talk about the experience that lead to the trauma in the first place. Choosing instead to bury my thoughts and feelings and to actively avoid anything that reminded me of the traumatic event.
Once associated mainly with veterans of the Vietnam War, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is now being related to many trauma inducing experiences such as rape, abuse, disasters, accidents, and torture. Studies have shown that about 30% of veterans, 45% of battered women, 50% of sexually abused children, and 35% of adult rape victims are likely to suffer from PTSD at some point in their lifetime.
Most studies and reviews focus on military veterans, but there is increasing interest in other groups who are susceptible – health workers, police, and fire-fighters. Researchers in the UK found a prevalence rate of 13% for PTSD symptoms amongst suburban police officers. Rates in urban police officers and officers in armed situations may be higher. Prevalence rates for PTSD in the community are probably about 2–3%. Rates of PTSD in police forces are therefore likely to be four to six times higher than in the general public. Rates of PTSD symptoms in professional fire-fighters may be as high as 18%.
A study undertaken by a team from the University of California proposes that dreaming seemed to help ease painful memories; Scientists have used scans to shed more light on how the brain deals with the memory of unpleasant or traumatic events during sleep. The University of California, Berkeley team showed emotional images to volunteers, and then scanned them several hours later as they saw them again. Those allowed to sleep in between showed less activity in the areas of the brain linked to emotion. Instead, the part of the brain linked to rational thought was more active the study, published in the journal Current Biology, said it showed the links between dreams and memory. Most people have to deal with traumatic events at some point in their lives, and, for some, these can produce post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), leaving them emotionally disturbed long after the event itself.
'To date, there is a paucity of data on patterns of utilisation of health services by asylum-seekers and refugees, including mental health. General practitioner (GP) surgeries represent a point of reference at a time when they have few others, and some GPs see them as frequent attenders. Presentations are typically in somatic idiom, often non-specific bodily pains, headaches, dizziness and weakness, which reflect both culturally ordained modes of help-seeking and their view of what is appropriate to bring to a medical setting '
Click HERE to link to site
'Asylum seekers are a vulnerable group in society. They often arrive in the UK in a state of poor health, many having experienced serious trauma in their home countries that has forced them to flee. As a result, psychological conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder are prevalent'. (An Article posted on the Healthy Inclusion website)
Click HERE to access full article
When terrible things happen we want to reach out a helping hand to those who are affected. This guide covers psychological first aid which involves humane, supportive and practical help to fellow human beings suffering serious crisis events. It is written for people in a position to help others who have experienced an extremely distressing event. It gives a framework for supporting people in ways that respect their dignity, culture and abilities. Despite its name, psychological first aid covers both social and psychological support.
Perhaps you are called upon to help in a major disaster or you find yourself at the scene of an accident where people are hurt. Or talking with someone from your community who has experienced a traumatic event. This guide will help you to know the most supportive things to say and do for people who are very distressed. It will also give you information on how to approach a new situation safely for yourself and others, and not to cause harm by your actions.
Published by World Health Organisation Click HERE to access
In the past ten years, there has been increasing recognition that children who have been exposed to traumatic events can, like trauma exposed adults, develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Practitioners therefore need to be able to recognise and treat post-traumatic stress reactions in children. However, the direct application of adult diagnostic criteria for PTSD can result in the misdiagnosis of post-traumatic stress reactions in children
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