In the US alone, for eight million people every year, traumas leave such a deep scar that it becomes a form of mental illness. That illness is called Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). In terms of percentage, PTSD prevalence in Canada (9.2%) is even higher. It happens when your brain keeps you under the influence of a past traumatic event, mostly by making you relive it or keeping you under its constant fear.
War veterans feel it, but not only them. Victims of various abuses, theft or disasters, accidents, patients of medical procedures, and those recovering from break-ups and loss of loved ones are also prone to developing the disorder. But is the recovery possible to the extent of complete cure?
Can a PTSD Patient Recover or Be Cured?
Although there is no complete cure for PTSD, recovery from the symptoms is entirely possible. With specific therapies, and medication, the disorder patients can see their stressors, troubling visions, and nightmares go away.
If properly taken care of, such patients can lead an everyday life even though the medications and other treatments remain constant. However, a lot of onus is also on the patients themselves and their friends and family. The healthier lifestyle they maintain, or more they partake in positive social activities, the quicker is their victory over their symptoms.
None of this works in isolation, though. Neither the medical treatment nor the personal part. It’s, therefore, important that the treatment is sufficiently complemented by a more personal effort.
Depending on the severity and symptoms, a mental health professional may opt for a range of treatments. The medications are usually about managing a patient’s sense of threat and subsequent fear. The mix often includes antidepressants, antipsychotics, and beta-blockers to lower the stress on the heart.
As for therapies, exposure ones can be a big help, for they help you confront your traumas and discuss them out in a controlled environment. Similarly, Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) can help get a patient out of any guilt or feelings of self-blame.
Among more intricate procedures, there exists such a treatment called Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR). For EMDRs, a therapist primarily uses eye movements to help patients process traumatic events and see them in a new light.
As for more personal remedies, massage, meditation, and breathing techniques have also proven to help PTSD patients.
The bottom-line, however, is that while all PTSD patients may have certain symptoms in common, they also differ widely from person to person. Therefore, professional help, and not just learnings from others’ experiences, should be sought early on. This is crucial for better management of the disorder and its effects on the patient’s daily life.
So, while a complete cure may not be available, there are multiple options to treat it to the extent of having full control over yourself. Unfortunately, though, with a lapse in medication or personal care, there are chances of relapse.
Annie’s Place recommends being consistent with your healthy routine and seeking professional help whenever the symptoms persist for longer than a week. If you happen to be in the Lower Mainland, we can help provide the necessary medical care at the comfort of the patient’s home.