Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is the lasting effect on a person when they have witnessed or experienced something very traumatic. This could be for instance a violent personal attack on themselves, being witness to a serious road accident, witnessing the death of someone or being in a natural disaster for example an earthquake. Most people experience shock when something like this happens, and they will feel very distressed after the event. This can then cause a range of emotions, however these feelings normally subside. Those with PTSD find they do not subside, and some find the symptoms appear weeks, months or even years after the original event occurred.

The symptoms of this disorder are many and varied. The sufferer will most probably experience flashbacks, they will keep reliving the event over and over in their mind. They will experience deep feelings of distress, especially at times when something may remind them of the actual event. They can suffer nightmares, and they will have constant disturbed sleep. They can be constantly on edge, nervous, and are easily startled. All of this can cause them to be irritable and angry

The person will avoid talking about the event, and due to this will cut themselves off from family and friends this can then lead to them feeling completely isolated. They can experience guilt. That they were unable to stop the event from happening, and that they could not do anything to help at the time.

Post-traumatic Stress Disorder can have a significant impact on a person’s daily life. It can lead to other disorders, substance and alcohol abuse and cause suicidal tendencies.