During the past couple of years, there have many traumatic stressors that have impacted us. Some were even potentially life threatening. Our resilience has generally allowed us to process these acute stressors without a lasting impact.
The American Psychiatric Association defines post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as, "a psychiatric disorder that may occur in people who have experienced or witnessed a traumatic event such as a natural disaster, a serious accident, a terrorist act, war/combat, or rape, a potentially life ending illness, or who have been threatened with death, sexual violence or serious injury."
For some, there are lasting emotional effects, including intense feelings and disturbing thoughts related to their experience. They may relive the event through flashbacks, hyperarousal, or nightmares that can be triggered by sensory stimuli such as sounds, smells, visual cues, or accidental touch.
Here are three things you can do to respect those who are dealing with PTSD:
- Take our anonymous PTSD screening.
- Download a free app PTSD Coach developed by the US Department of Veterans Affairs as a tool to learn about PTSD, manage stress, track your PTSD symptoms.
- For the upcoming holiday, veterans and society in general expect fireworks on 4th of July weekend, but not necessarily on other random evenings. This can also be hard for those with autism or other sensory issues. Pets are also sensitive to loud noises, flashing lights, and strong smells. Consider going to a hike in the country, go or have music or the TV on to soften jarring noises Independence Day to limit the triggers.
If you are struggling with your mental well-being, call 615-936-1327 to schedule a confidential appointment with one of our EAP Counselors. Work/Life Connections-EAP is the program of Faculty and Staff Health and Wellness focused on elevating your psychological resilience.