Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, or PTSD is now a recognized term, with countless news stories covering servicemen and women returning from active duty, who are suffering from a range of difficulties. The Observer reports that almost one-third of returning members of the military are dealing with some form of PTSD.
Each individual reacts to high-stress or traumatic events differently, calling the condition a “disorder” is problematical—there is not a clearly defined set of symptoms or method by which it can be diagnosed or treated, according to the news source. The “D” in PTSD will likely soon be dropped, with the condition soon to shift to being called PTS rather than PTSD.
Researchers are involved in identifying the treatments that can bring relief to sufferers of PTSD, including using advanced brain imaging to identify the areas of the brain associated with fear and memory. These techniques could also prove to be valuable in identifying those who are more likely to suffer extreme reactions to traumatic situations prior to deployment.
Veterans who suffer flashbacks and other symptoms of PTSD are considered more likely to have what is commonly called a “disorder,” while others have a range of other symptoms, including headaches, dizziness, nausea, problems in thinking clearly and difficulties with memory. As most diseases and disorders can be easily diagnosed through testing to discover the exact virus, bacteria, or disease, mental problems are far more difficult to both diagnose and treat, as the issues are unique to the individual, and an effective treatment for one person may completely fail with another. Anti-depressants come with a range of dangerous side-effects that make these medications a less-than-effective treatment in many cases, and can even result in exacerbation of the condition for some people.
Dropping the “D” from PTSD could be helpful for those veterans who are seeking employment and may be dealing with concerns about revealed the condition to prospective employers. Whether the final decision is to call the conditions PTS or PTSD can mean little to those who are currently dealing with the aftermath being exposed to highly-stressful, life-threatening events. All that is hoped for is some level of real relief, and the ability to live life as he or she did prior to active duty in the military.