The concept of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been with us for centuries but has had many names. It was “shell shock” and “battle fatigue” before it was PTSD and is now known to affect not just military veterans but anyone who has gone through an intense traumatic experience. In fact, about one in 11 people will have PTSD in their lifetime, according to the American Psychiatric Association.
While anxiety symptoms are a huge part of PTSD, they’re not the whole picture. People with PTSD often suffer from depression, negative thoughts, and impulsive or self-destructive behavior as well.
PTSD also has its own treatments, which is why it’s important to get the right diagnosis.
“With proper treatment, veterans and all Americans can lead happy, whole, healthy lives with PTSD,” says Emily Blair, manager of military and veterans’ policy at the National Alliance on Mental Illness. Here are the signs and symptoms to watch for.