Do I Have PTSD or Anxiety?
Do you experience feelings of panic, nightmares, chronic worries or nervousness? If so, you may be suffering from anxiety. Anxiety is a common but very serious problem that can affect every aspect of your life. Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a type of anxiety problem that can lead to even greater levels of anxiety and problems over time.
What Is Posttraumatic Stress Disorder?
A person may be diagnosed with PTSD after experiencing a life-threatening or traumatic event. Usually, PTSD begins after a person believes that his life is in danger. The event that causes PTSD symptoms does not actually have to be life-threatening, but if you felt threatened or in danger at the time, then PTSD may occur. PTSD usually follows war or battle experiences, but it can also follow violence, abuse, assault, rape, loss of a loved one, natural disaster, or other catastrophic event. Some symptoms of PTSD include the following:
- Recurrent and intrusive memories or thoughts about the incident
- Feelings of panic or guilt about the event
- Difficulty recalling the event
- Problems connecting with others or feeling close to other people
- Feelings of irritability and anger that almost feel uncontrollable at times
- Efforts to avoid the unpleasant memories or experiences, sometimes at extreme costs
- Difficulty concentrating
- Feeling easily startled, or being constantly on guard
Post-traumatic stress disorder can overwhelm its victims. Symptoms can become worse over time without some type of intervention.
How Is General Anxiety Different from PTSD?
PTSD is a type of anxiety problem. However, you can have anxiety without having PTSD. Anxiety can be just as serious as PTSD, and it can manifest in ways such as the following:
- Generalized anxiety disorder: GAD is an anxiety issue that causes excessive worry and constant feelings of stress and concern over a number of different issues.
- Social anxiety: People with social anxiety feel panicked in social situations. Fear of public speaking is a very common social anxiety issue. Problematic social anxiety can cause individuals to live in isolation, struggle with employment and relations with others.
- Panic disorder: Panic disorder causes sudden and terrifying panic attacks that can seem unrelated to any real fear. Over time, panic attacks usually become worse as the suffering person begins to fear and anticipate future panic attacks.
- Specific phobia: A specific phobia is a fear of a specific object or experience. Some specific phobias include blood phobia, spider phobia, fear of heights, or a fear of dogs.
- Obsessive compulsive disorder: OCD is an anxiety disorder that causes people to obsess over repetitive thoughts and then try to ease those anxious thoughts through a compulsive behavior such as counting, hand washing or checking. OCD becomes progressively worse over time, like many other anxiety issues.
Remember that an anxiety issue can occur alongside other anxiety problems. In fact, many people who suffer from generalized anxiety disorder also suffer from PTSD or other phobias or anxiety concerns.
Help with PTSD and Anxiety
Call us now and speak with an experienced and understanding counselor who can help. Our 24 hour, toll-free helpline can put you in touch with the best PTSD and anxiety professionals available. We work with a wide network of treatment providers, and we would be happy to help you find relief from the panic, anxiety and stress that has taken over your life.