Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a psychiatric condition, can develop after any catastrophic life event. Symptoms include nightmares, flashbacks, sweating, rapid heart rate, detachment, amnesia, sleep problems, irritability, and exaggerated startle response. Treatment may involve psychotherapy, group support, and medication. Read more: Post-traumatic Stress Disorder Article
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Related Disease Conditions
Cancer is a disease caused by an abnormal growth of cells, also called malignancy. It is a group of 100 different diseases, and is not contagious. Cancer can be treated through chemotherapy, a treatment of drugs that destroy cancer cells.
Drug addiction is a chronic disease that causes drug-seeking behavior and drug use despite negative consequences to the user and those around him. Though the initial decision to use drugs is voluntary, changes in the brain caused by repeated drug abuse can affect a person's self-control and ability to make the right decisions and increase the urge to take drugs. Drug abuse and addiction are preventable.
Grief: Loss of a Loved One
Grief is the feeling one experiences after a loss (of a friendship, death of loved one, job). Complicated grief refers to grief that lasts for more than a year. Mourning describes the customs and rituals that help bereaved individuals make sense of their loss.
Stress occurs when forces from the outside world impinge on the individual. Stress is a normal part of life. However, over-stress, can be harmful. There is now speculation, as well as some evidence, that points to the abnormal stress responses as being involved in causing various diseases or conditions.
Angina is chest pain due to inadequate blood supply to the heart. Angina symptoms may include chest tightness, burning, squeezing, and aching. Coronary artery disease is the main cause of angina but there are other causes. Angina is diagnosed by taking the patient's medical history and performing tests such as an electrocardiogram (EKG), blood test, stress test, echocardiogram, cardiac CT scan, and heart catheterization. Treatment of angina usually includes lifestyle modification, medication, and sometimes, surgery. The risk of angina can be reduced by following a heart healthy lifestyle.
Tension Headache (Symptoms, Relief, Causes, Treatment)
A tension headache s one of the most common types of headaches, and the exact cause is not known. Factors that may contribute to tension or stress headaches are lack of sleep, increased stress (referred to as a stress headache), skipping meals, dehydration, medical diseases or conditions, anxiety, or changes at home, work, or school. Treatment of tension headaches include prescription and OTC medications, stress management, and treating any underlying illness or condition.
Depression is an illness that involves the body, mood, and thoughts and affects the way a person eats and sleeps, the way one feels about oneself, and the way one thinks about things. The principal types of depression are major depression, dysthymia, and bipolar disease (also called manic-depressive disease).
Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse
Alcoholism is a disease that includes alcohol craving and continued drinking despite repeated alcohol-related problems, such as losing a job or getting into trouble with the law. It can cause myriad health problems, including cirrhosis of the liver, birth defects, heart disease, stroke, psychological problems, and dementia. Counseling and a few medications can be effective for alcoholism treatment.
Sleep Disorders (How to Get a Good Night's Sleep)
A number of vital tasks carried out during sleep help maintain good health and enable people to function at their best. Sleep needs vary from individual to individual and change throughout your life. The National Institutes of Health recommend about 7-9 hours of sleep each night for older, school-aged children, teens, and most average adults; 10-12 for preschool-aged children; and 16-18 hours for newborns. There are two stages of sleep; 1) REM sleep (rapid-eye movement), and 2) NREM sleep (non-rapid-eye movement). The side effects of lack of sleep or insomnia include: Irritability Tiredness Feeling sleepy during the day Concentration or memory problems Lack of sleep and insomnia can be caused by medical conditions or diseases, medications, stress, or pain. The treatment for lack of sleep and insomnia depends upon the cause.
Suicide is the process of intentionally ending one's own life. Approximately 1 million people worldwide commit suicide each year, and 10 million to 20 million attempt suicide annually.
Phobias are unrelenting fears of activities (social phobias), situations (agoraphobia), and specific items (arachnophobia). There is thought to be a hereditary component to phobias, though there may be a cultural influence or they may be triggered by life events. Symptoms and signs of phobias include having a panic attack, shaking, breathing troubles, rapid heartbeat, and a strong desire to escape the situation. Treatment of phobias typically involves desensitization, cognitive behavioral therapy, and medications such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors and beta-blockers.
Dissociative Identity Disorder
Dissociative identity disorder (formerly known as multiple personality disorder or split personality disorder) is a mental illness in which a person has at least two distinct personalities. Symptoms and signs include lapses in memory, feeling unreal, blackouts in time, hearing voices in their head that are not their own, not recognizing themselves in the mirror, and finding items in one's possession but not recalling how they were acquired. Treatment usually involves psychotherapy, medications, and sometimes hypnosis.
Insomnia is the perception or complaint of inadequate or poor-quality sleep because of difficulty falling asleep; waking up frequently during the night with difficulty returning to sleep; waking up too early in the morning; or unrefreshing sleep. Secondary insomnia is the most common type of insomnia. Treatment for insomnia include lifestyle changes, cognitive behavioral therapy, and medication.
Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD)
Borderline personality disorder is a serious mental illness characterized by pervasive instability in moods, interpersonal relationships, self-image, and behavior. This instability often disrupts family and work life, long-term planning, and the individual's sense of self-identity. Originally thought to be at the "borderline" of psychosis, people with borderline personality disorder (BPD) suffer from a disorder of emotion regulation.
Why Do People Sleepwalk (Somnambulism)?
Sleepwalking is a condition in which an individual walks or does other activities while asleep. Factors associated with sleepwalking include genetic, environmental, and physiological. Episodes of sleepwalking may include quiet walking to agitated running. Conditions that may have similar symptoms of sleepwalking, but are not include night terrors, confusional arousals, and nocturnal seizures. Treatment of sleepwalking generally include preventative measures. Medication may be prescribed if necessary.
Children's health is focused on the well-being of children from conception through adolescence. There are many aspects of children's health, including growth and development, illnesses, injuries, behavior, mental illness, family health, and community health.
Depression in Children
Childhood depression can interfere with social activities, interests, schoolwork and family life. Symptoms and signs include anger, social withdrawal, vocal outbursts, fatigue, physical complaints, and thoughts of suicide. Treatment may involve psychotherapy and medication.
What Are the Physical and Emotional Signs of Stress?
What effect does stress have in the body and mind? Learn about stress and its symptoms, signs, causes, and treatments.
Mental health is an optimal way of thinking, relating to others, and feeling. All of the diagnosable mental disorders fall under the umbrella of mental illness. Depression, anxiety, and substance-abuse disorders are common types of mental illness. Symptoms and signs of mental illness include irritability, moodiness, insomnia, headaches, and sadness. Treatment may involve psychotherapy and medication.
Approximately 40 million children suffer abuse every year around the world, and more than 1,500 children die of abuse in the U.S. every year. Symptoms and signs of child abuse include poor school performance, physical injuries, regression, anxiety, and panic. Treatment involves ensuring the safety of the child and tending to any physical injuries.
There are many forms of sexual assault, including rape, attempted rape, child molestation, sexual intercourse that you say no to, inappropriate touching, and vaginal, anal, or oral penetration. Sexual assault can also be anything that forces someone to join in unwanted sexual contact or attention, such as voyeurism, exhibitionism, incest, and sexual harassment.
What Does Scarred for Life Mean?
The idiom "scarred for life" may be used figuratively to describe an emotional wound or a trauma that doesn’t fully heal. In the literal sense, however, it means someone or something is disfigured by permanent scars received in an accident or mishap, or it means a person has had a traumatic event that they will suffer from or otherwise be changed negatively for the rest of their lives.
Nightmares are dreams that cause high anxiety or terror. Nightmares may be a part of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and they usually occur during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. There are several different treatment options for nightmares, including cognitive-behavioral therapy and medications.
Abuse, Trauma, and Mental Health
Suffering abuse and trauma can put one at higher risk of developing PTSD, anxiety, and depression. Signs and symptoms of abuse or trauma include appetite or mood changes, alcohol and/or drug abuse, difficulty sleeping, and anger. Treatment may incorporate a combination of medication and talk therapy.
Local ResourcesFind a local Psychiatrist in your town
Treatment & Diagnosis
Medications & Supplements
- Lexapro vs. Wellbutrin: Differences between Side Effects and Uses
- Zoloft (sertraline)
- Antidepressants (Depression Medications)
- Anxiolytics (for Anxiety) Drug Class Side Effects
- Wellbutrin (bupropion)
- Citalopram (Celexa)
- alprazolam (Xanax)
- Cymbalta (duloxetine)
- Sertraline (Zoloft) vs. Venlafaxine (Effexor)
- Trazodone (Desyrel)
- Zoloft (sertraline) vs. Cymbalta (duloxetine)
- olanzapine (Zyprexa, Zydis)
- Zoloft (sertraline) vs. Paxil (paroxetine)
- quetiapine (Seroquel)
- venlafaxine, Effexor XR (Effexor has been discontinued in the US)
- propranolol, Inderal, Inderal LA, Innopran XL
- fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem, Prozac Weekly)
- Zoloft (sertraline) vs. Prozac (fluoxetine)
- Buspar vs. Zoloft (Differences between Side Effects and Uses)
- Klonopin (clonazepam) vs. Zoloft (sertraline)
- paroxetine (Paxil, Pexeva)
- prazosin (Minipress)
- risperidone, Risperdal; Risperdal Consta, Risperdal M-TAB
- lithium (Lithobid)
- Zoloft (sertraline) vs. Wellbutrin (bupropion)
- desvenlafaxine (Pristiq, Khedezla)
- lamotrigine, Lamictal, Lamictal CD, Lamictal ODT, Lamictal XR
- Klonopin (clonazepam) vs. Xanax (alprazolam)
- zolpidem (Ambien)
- nefazodone (Serzone)
- guanfacine (Intuniv, Tenex)
- paliperidone (Invega)
- blue-green algae (Cyanobacteria, Spirulina)
- tiagabine - oral, Gabitril
Prevention & Wellness
- Equine Therapy: Horses Help Veterans Struggling With PTSD
- PTSD Common After Sexual Assault, But Eases for Most
- Alligator Attack Nearly Cost This Firefighter Dad His Arm
- Post-COVID PTSD? Many Find Return to 'Normal' Unsettling
- 'Light Therapy' Could Help Brain-Injured Veterans Struggling With PTSD
- Most Injured Workers Resume Jobs After Recovery, But Finances Suffer
- PTSD Therapy Doesn't Trigger Drug Relapse in Addiction Patients: Study
- New Leash on Life: How Dog-Walking Is Helping Veterans Battered by PTSD
- Cyberbullies and Their Victims Can Both Develop PTSD
- 'Trigger Warnings' May Do More Harm Than Good, Study Finds
- AHA News: Looking for Ways to Protect Against Pandemic PTSD
- PTSD May Plague Nurses, Especially in COVID-19 Era
- Depression, Anxiety, PTSD May Plague Many COVID-19 Survivors
- 4 in 10 Security Guards Suffer PTSD, Study Finds
- Rapid Response to PTSD Therapy May Predict Long-Term Improvement
- PTSD Can Take Heavy Toll on Hearts of Female Vets
- 'Eye of the Storm:' U.S. Nurses Already Facing Extreme Stress Over Coronavirus
- 9/11 Study Shows PTSD Tied to Earlier Death
- Veterans' Tough Veneer May Influence PTSD Severity
- Online Bullies Make Teen Depression, PTSD Even Worse: Survey
- Trauma of Miscarriage May Trigger PTSD
- Hong Kong Unrest Leaves Millions to Struggle With PTSD, Depression
- Health Care Is Top Concern for U.S. Veterans
- AHA News: Heart Attack Survivors Who Develop PTSD Don't Always Take Heart Meds
- Veterans Often Hit Hard by Deaths of Fellow Soldiers
- Marijuana for Mental Health Treatment Ineffective, Analysis Finds
- PTSD Linked to Increased Risk of Stroke in Younger Adults
- Prepare for a Disaster With a Family Safety Plan
- Mental Ills May Put Veterans at Higher Odds for Heart Trouble
- Many Female Veterans Troubled by History of Sexual Assault
- Vets With Traumatic Brain Injury Have Higher Suicide Risk: Study
- Dogs Help Injured Vets Cope
- 9/11 Health Conditions and Cancers 18 Years Later
- PTSD a Risk Factor for Ovarian Cancer?
- Explaining, Easing the Horror of Mass Shootings for Your Kids
- Brain Changes Noted in Holocaust Survivors and Their Children
- Parent Who Listens Can Help Kids Thrive Despite Trauma
- Vets With PTSD Face Higher Odds for Early Death From Multiple Causes
- AHA News: Drummer's Death Inspires Grief-Stricken Bandmates to Rethink Rock 'n' Roll Lifestyle
- Scientists Spot Chemical Signs of Suicidal Thoughts in Brains of Those With PTSD
- 'Exposure Therapy' May Work Best for PTSD Plus Drinking Problems
- America's Stress Levels Soar: Survey
- Scientists Spot Brain Cells That Control Traumatic Memories
- Kids Can Get 'Stuck' on Traumatic Event, Leading to PTSD
- Does PTSD Really Harm Veterans' Hearts?
- Gun Injuries Bring Especially Tough Recoveries
- PTSD Drug May Do More Harm Than Good
- Health Tip: What Causes Memory Loss?
- PTSD Patients Do Best When They Choose Their Treatment
- Firsthand 9/11 Exposure Fueling Alcohol- and Drug-Related Deaths: Study
- 'Stress Hormone' Tied to Worse Memory in Middle Age
- 1 in 4 College Students Really Stressed Out by 2016 Election: Survey
- Xanax, Valium Tied to Higher Suicide Risk in COPD Patients With PTSD
- Flooding a Major Health Danger as Michael's Fury Continues
- Sexual Assault Has Long-Term Mental, Physical Impact
- A Little 'Horseplay' Eases Veterans' Mind, Body & Soul
- Health Tip: Help Manage Stress
- PTSD May Have Put Hearts of 9/11 First Responders at Risk
- Native American Teens at Higher Risk for Substance Abuse
- Severe Stress May Send Immune System Into Overdrive
- First Ketamine Guidelines for Pain Released
- Dogs May Help Soothe Vets With PTSD
- Ariana Grande Reveals PTSD a Year After Concert Bomb Attack
- PTSD May Raise Odds for Irregular Heartbeat
- Ecstasy May Help Some PTSD Sufferers, but Safety Issues Remain
- Health Tip: Handle a Child's Traumatic Stress
- Can Just 5 Therapy Sessions Work for Those With PTSD?
- Cancer Survivors Can Develop PTSD, Too
- PTSD After Head Injury May Signal Brain Changes
- Risky Behavior Triggers Vicious Cycle for Vets With PTSD
- PTSD, Brain Injuries Common Among U.S. Troops Discharged for Misconduct: Report
- 'Fight or Flight' Response Greater in Combat Vets With PTSD: Study
- Genes May Govern Your Risk for PTSD
- A 'Brainwave' to Help Fight PTSD
- Trauma as a Teen May Boost Depression Risk Around Menopause
- Parents of Kids With Heart Defects Face PTSD Risk: Study
- Sleep May Help People Process Traumatic Events
- Turning to an Ancient Art to Help Ease PTSD in Veterans
- FDA Approves Large Studies of Ecstasy to Treat PTSD
- PTSD May Affect Boys, Girls Differently, Brain Scans Show
- Parents Often Miss Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in Kids
- Be Alert for PTSD After Pregnancy Loss
- Childhood PTSD May Leave Imprint on Brain
- Mindfulness Training May Ease PTSD
- PTSD May Stiffen Veterans' Arteries, Boosting Heart Risks
- Heart Defects at Birth May Raise Risk for PTSD Later in Life
- Earthquake Survivors With PTSD Show Brain Differences
- Cyberbullying, Violence Linked to PTSD in Teens
- Pregnancy May Ease PTSD for Some Women, Study Finds
- Wearable Electric Patch May Ease PTSD
- Small Study Sees Differences in Brains of Soldiers With PTSD
- Transcendental Meditation May Help Relieve PTSD
- Study Maps Areas of Brain Linked to PTSD
- Brain's Signaling Systems Might Determine PTSD Severity: Study
- Severe Combat Injuries Linked to Risk of Chronic Diseases
- PTSD Can Affect Female Vietnam War Vets, Too: Study
- Women Soldiers No More Likely to Develop PTSD, Study Finds
- Mindfulness Therapy Might Help Ease PTSD
- PTSD Symptoms Persist for Thousands of Vietnam Vets, Study Finds
- Plane Passengers' Near-Death Experience Gives Clues to Trauma's Effect on Brain
- Trauma, PTSD May Raise Women's Odds of Heart Attack, Stroke: Study
- Vets With PTSD Might Need Sleep Apnea Screening: Study
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder May Be Linked to Accelerated Aging
- Combat Deployment Just One Factor That May Cause Smoking
- Family Stress May Figure in Soldiers' Suicide Risk
- 'Killing Fields' Survivors Struggle With PTSD
- Parents of Young Stroke Victims at Risk for PTSD, Researchers Find
- 'Hidden' Brain Damage Seen in Vets With Blast Injuries: Study
- PTSD May Raise Women's Risk for Diabetes
- PTSD in Women Linked to Premature Birth
- Mini-Strokes May Lead to PTSD, Study Finds
- U.S. Pledges Millions to Study Ways to Ease Soldiers' Pain
- PTSD Link to Food Addiction Seen in Report
- Research Shows Possible Neurological Patterns for PTSD Symptoms
- Muscle and Bone Injuries, Mental Disorders Plagued U.S. Iraq War Vets
- Too Little Known About PTSD Treatments for Veterans, Experts Say
- More U.S. Service Members in Treatment for Mental Health Disorders
- ICU Patients at Much Greater Risk for PTSD: Study
- Poor Sleep in Gulf War Vets May Be Tied to Brain Changes
- College Drinking May Aggravate PTSD Symptoms
- No Rise of PTSD Seen in Children With Cancer
- Therapy That Confronts Trauma of Sexual Abuse Helped Teen Girls With PTSD
- Brain Injuries Tied to PTSD in Marines
- Coverage of Boston Bombings Unnerved Many: Study
- Military Contractors Suffer High Rates of PTSD, Study Finds
- PTSD Might Lead to Sizable Weight Gain in Women
- Boston Bombing Triggered Flashbacks in Vets With PTSD, Study Finds
- New Test Spots Risk for PTSD in Injured Kids
- Shopping Doesn't Help in Face of Trauma, Researchers Say
- Joint Alcohol-PTSD Treatment Appears Effective, Study Finds
- U.S. Troops' Suicide Risk Tied to Mental Illness, Not Combat: Study
- Sleep Apnea Treatment Eases Nightmares in Vets With PTSD: Study
- Depression Common in Those With PTSD, Study Finds
- PTSD After Heart Attack Linked to Poor Sleep
- Helping Children Make Sense of the Senseless
- Severely Injured Vets May Need Ongoing Emotional Care
- U.S. Must Step Up Response to Vets, Report Says
- Brain Changes Could Contribute to Gulf War Illness: Study
- Stress Disorder May Be Common Among ICU Patients on Ventilators
- 1 in 4 Breast Cancer Diagnoses May Spur PTSD
- Long Waits in the ER May Raise PTSD Risk for Heart Patients
- Most U.S. Soldiers May Suffer From Sleep Problems
- PTSD Can Hamper Drug Treatment for Stroke Survivors: Study
- Chronic Worry Linked to Higher Risk of PTSD
- Violence in a Soldier's Past May Up PTSD Risk
- Undiagnosed Eye Problems Plague Some U.S. Veterans
- Brain Anatomy May Play Role in Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
- For Many, 'Superstorm' Sandy Could Take Toll on Mental Health
- Melatonin May Improve Sleep for People on Blood-Pressure Meds
- Complementary Medicine May Help Soldiers With PTSD: Study
- Young Children Treated for Cancer May Be at Risk for PTSD: Study
- Vets' Readjustment Issues May Spur PTSD Treatment
- PTSD Treatment and Couple Therapy Go Hand in Hand
- 'Virtual' Patients New Addition to Psychiatry?
- Improve Care for Veterans With PTSD: Report
- PTSD Unrecognized Risk Among Heart Attack Patients
- Wartime Killing May Raise Veterans' Thoughts of Suicide
- Witnessing, Experiencing Traumatic Events May Worsen Heart Disease
- 911 Dispatchers May Suffer From Post-Traumatic Stress
- U.S. Army Suicides Rising Sharply, Study Finds
- Narcotic Painkillers Another Threat to Traumatized War Vets: Study
- National Guard Deployment May Sometimes Trigger Alcohol Abuse
- In Dollars Alone, Cost of U.S. Child Abuse High
- U.S. Military Women Exposed to More Combat Than Ever Before
- Sleep Might Help Deepen Traumatic Memories
- Health Highlights: Jan. 11, 2012
- In the Age of Email, the Good, Old Letter Still Holds Sway
- Millions of Americans Are Victims of Sexual Violence: CDC
- School Shooting Study Yields Genetic Links to PTSD
- Study: Antipsychotic Drug Does Not Help Veterans With PTSD
- PTSD Peaks at Different Ages in Men, Women
- Researchers Use Ecstasy to Treat PTSD
- Local Anesthetic May Relieve PTSD Symptoms
- PTSD Treatment Still Lacking for Veterans
- Scientists Read Brain's Magnetic Fields to Spot PTSD
- Young Vets With PTSD More Prone to Heart Risk Factors
- Exposure Therapy Effective in Preventing Post-Traumatic Stress
- Depression, PTSD Common Among Lung Transplant Patient Caregivers
- Mood Disorders Put Breast Cancer Patients at Risk for PTSD
- Vietnam Vets Study Links Asthma and PTSD
- Value of Most Post-Traumatic Stress Treatments 'Uncertain'
- Parents' PTSD May Boost Stress in Offspring
- Battle Continues Over Vietnam PTSD Numbers
- Katrina Victims 10 Times More Prone to Post-Traumatic Stress
- Common PTSD Drug May Be Useless