What are your symptoms and what signs do you or others see in you?
Are you aware you have symptoms of PTSD?
Do you see them in other people?
PTSD isnt easy to spot for other people, even medical professionals struggle sometimes.
Although there are some lists of recognsied symptoms which I will post below, not everyone can recognise a reaction to a past event (or several events), or the symptoms of a reaction.
The medical tests seem not to be well known by medical staff? Some say there are no recognised tests.
What are the tests?
I would like people to help out and say what symptoms they have or are aware of? and do the formal lists of recognised symptoms bear any relation to peoples personal experiences? Do we share any common symptoms amongst a broad range of types of event and range of reactions?
I have found so much ignorance on this subject and there seems to be either very little framework for diagnosis or none at all.
Here are some of the recognised symptoms. But only a few seem relevent to me personally.
From "Mind" Symptoms of PTSD
"Reliving aspects of the trauma
vivid flashbacks (feeling that the trauma is happening all over again)
intrusive thoughts and images
intense distress at real or symbolic reminders of the trauma.
avoiding situations that remind you of the trauma
repressing memories (being unable to remember aspects of the event)
feeling detached, cut off and emotionally numb
being unable to express affection
feeling there’s no point in planning for the future.
Being easily upset or angry
irritability and aggressive behaviour
lack of concentration
panic response to anything to do with the trauma
being easily startled."
From NHS Choices:
"Signs and symptoms
Someone with PTSD will often relive the traumatic event through nightmares and flashbacks, and may experience feelings of isolation, irritability and guilt.
They may also have problems sleeping, such as insomnia, and find concentrating difficult.
These symptoms are often severe and persistent enough to have a significant impact on the person’s day-to-day life.
Read more about the symptoms of PTSD."
"The symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can have a significant impact on your day-to-day life.
In most cases, the symptoms develop during the first month after a traumatic event. However, in a minority of cases, there may be a delay of months or even years before symptoms start to appear.
Some people with PTSD experience long periods when their symptoms are less noticeable, followed by periods where they worsen. Other people have severe symptoms that are constant.
The specific symptoms of PTSD can vary widely between individuals, but they generally fall into the categories described below.
Re-experiencing is the most typical symptom of PTSD. This is when a person involuntarily and vividly re-lives the traumatic event in the form of flashbacks, nightmares or repetitive and distressing images or sensations. This can even include physical sensations such as pain, sweating and trembling.
Some people will have constant negative thoughts about their experience, repeatedly asking themselves questions that prevent them from coming to terms with the event. For example, they may wonder why the event happened to them and if they could have done anything to stop it, which can lead to feelings of guilt or shame.
Avoidance and emotional numbing
Trying to avoid being reminded of the traumatic event is another key symptom of PTSD. This usually means avoiding certain people or places that remind you of the trauma, or avoiding talking to anyone about your experience.
Many people with PTSD will try to push memories of the event out of their mind, often distracting themselves with work or hobbies.
Some people attempt to deal with their feelings by trying not to feel anything at all. This is known as emotional numbing. This can lead to the person becoming isolated and withdrawn, and they may also give up pursuing the activities that they used to enjoy.
Hyperarousal (feeling 'on edge')
Someone with PTSD may be very anxious and find it difficult to relax. They may be constantly aware of threats and easily startled. This state of mind is known as hyperarousal.
Hyperarousal often leads to irritability, angry outbursts, sleeping problems (insomnia) and difficulty concentrating.
Many people with PTSD also have a number of other problems, including:
depression, anxiety and phobias
drug misuse or alcohol misuse
headaches, dizziness, chest pains and stomach aches
PTSD sometimes leads to work-related problems and the breakdown of relationships.
PTSD in children
PTSD can affect children as well as adults. Children with the condition can have similar symptoms to adults, such as having trouble sleeping and upsetting nightmares.
Like adults, children with PTSD may also lose interest in activities that they used to enjoy and they may have physical symptoms such as headaches and stomach aches.
However, there are some symptoms that are more specific to children with PTSD, such as:
being unusually anxious about being separated from a parent or other adult
re-enacting the traumatic event(s) through their play"