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Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), (formerly Shell Shock, or Battle Fatigue Syndrome), can develop after a person has witnessed or experienced a traumatic event in which serious harm or death occurred, or was thought probable. Additionally, individuals may develop PTSD from being exposed to the details of a traumatic event of a loved one or through during the course of their profession (e.g. first responders, police officers). Although, PTSD can develop in the context of combat, PTSD can result from a broad range of trauma.

In the immediate aftermath of a trauma is common for people to experience distressing memories or spend time thinking about the trauma, however when these symptoms continue for an extended period of time, it may qualify as PTSD. Some individuals get stuck in the cycle of recovery and experience persistent symptoms. Some other symptoms of PTSD include: nervousness, helplessness, intrusive memories of the event, avoidance of triggers, hyperarousal (exaggerated startle response, hypervigilance, and irritability), and depressed thoughts or feelings. Sometimes reactions can be significantly delayed, only to resurface later, causing added stress and confusion. Without treatment, reactions to guilt, rage, and shock can interfere with normal life functioning.

Children may express re-experiencing symptoms through play that is directly or symbolically related to the experience, avoidance.


Fortunately, with treatment individuals can be given the tools needed to deal with symptoms and improve their lives. West Texas Counseling and Guidance’s staff is trained in a number of therapy modalities to address PTSD, including: cognitive possessing therapy (CPT), cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), prolonged exposure therapy, and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR).

For young children, early intervention is vital to help them recover and continue their development on a normal schedule. For these children play therapy is available.

For adolescents, Trauma Focused CBT is recommended.


PTSD/Trauma specific treatment available:

National Center for PTSD: PTSD Treatment Decision Aid- provides detailed information about the trypes of treatment available and help individuals select the option that is the best match