I’m going to start a new series regarding the basics of PTSD and how it affects daily life of a PTSD survivor and their loved ones. I’ll focus on a single component of PTSD as much as I can (most posts here involve the co-mingling of several ideas and topics), and discuss it as in-depth as I can understand.
PTSD has four sets of symptom clusters defined in the DSM-5:
- Negative alterations in cognition and mood
- Alterations in arousal and reactivity
Each of these clusters contains several symptoms each that survivors might feel on an intermittent or constant basis. I’ll take one symptom from one cluster each time and delve as deeply into it as I can.
Why Do This?
There are a lot of articles out there that give good overviews about PTSD, but I’m hoping to take a different approach. It’s fairly simple, really. The idea that I have is that the research that I do on a regular basis can get fairly involved, containing large amounts of medical jargon and statistics. With this kind of series, I’m able to distill a particular aspect of the disorder to a single post, building up a sort of lexicon and resource for future posts.
The basics of PTSD are not really all that basic: PTSD is a complex disorder that plagues not only the survivor, but the survivor’s way of life and their loved ones. An understanding of what goes on in the survivor’s mind is a key indicator of treatment and how to best approach potentially threatening situations.