Dr. Charles Figley, who I quote in my book, is one of the foremost authorities on the effects of trauma and PTSD. He notes the following characteristics in the person with PTSD:
- Re-experiences the most traumatic aspects of the event many times, in flashbacks, memory, or dreams
- Makes efforts to avoid exposure to reminders.
- Is on edge, unable to relax.
- Is unable to think about the event without being obsessed.
- Experiences symptoms for more than a month.
He or she can also exhibits these symptoms:
- Phobia and general anxiety (especially among former POWs and hostages and natural disaster survivors)
- Drinking or drug problems
- Feelings of hopelessness, shame, or despair. and/or intense guilt
- Psychosomatic complaints, increased hospitalization
- An altered sense of time (especially among children)
- Grief reactions and obsessions with death (especially among those who survived a trauma in which someone died or could have died)
- Increased interpersonal conflicts and outbursts of anger, (divorce and violence)
- Absenteeism, criminal behavior, and truancy.
From: Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy -AAMFT -Clinical Update Volume 2, Issue 5, Sept. 2000, http://www.aamft.org/families/Consumer_Updates/PTSD
_AAMFT_Clinical_Update.htm And from AAMFT Consumer Update on Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, www.aamft.org/families/Consumer_Updates/PTSD.asp
Also See the webpage,“What is PTSD” It is put out by the Department of Veteran Affairs, Nation Center for PTSD and will answer most of your questions. http://www.ptsd.va.gov/public/pages/what-is-ptsd.asp