What is PTSD

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a natural, but often debilitating, reaction to situations of extreme stress, particularly the stress of combat. While every soldier experiences stress-related reactions immediately after disturbing events, for about one in five, symptoms may arise months or even years later. These symptoms may include anxiety, nervousness, depression, sleeplessness, nightmares, difficulty in managing anger, irritability, estrangement from friends and family, and a loss of pleasure in the good things in life. They frequently lead to difficulties in coping with even minor stressors in the home, workplace and community. Some symptoms of PTSD directly increase the risk of other serious health problems, and PTSD often leads to unhealthy behaviors like alcohol, drug and tobacco use. One of the worst attributes of the disorder is that it often causes victims to self-seclude, withdrawing from others, from friends, family and mental health care professionals who could play a key role in their recovery.

PTSD is now recognized to be a national epidemic, affecting millions of Americans, and the Veterans Department reports that 18 veterans end their own lives every day.

It has been our purpose at Highlands Hospital to speak out about PTSD in ways that will:
• Restore hope and good health to the victims of PTSD
• Help family members to understand and cope with PTSD
• Help health care professionals correctly diagnose PTSD so they may direct victims into appropriate treatment
• Make the community at large aware of PTSD as a common service-related injury, and remind everyone of the importance of
• serving those who served us so faithfully

It is the purpose of this web site to create a forum through which all those affected by PTSD can better understand it, share their stories, make real personal connections with others, access valuable tools, discover effective treatment options, and truly find their way home again.