PTSD UK was founded in 2015 by Jacqui Suttie after her own experiences suffering with PTSD. The lack of understanding, provisions and information made Jacqui realise that help and education is needed for those struggling with PTSD – along with their friends and family.
PTSD UK is currently the only charity in the UK dedicated to raising awareness of post-traumatic stress disorder – no matter the trauma that caused it.
Evidence suggests that around 70% of people who suffer with PTSD in the UK do not receive any professional help at all, and many of those who are aware they have it are not getting the help and support they need.
Our charity aims to raise awareness of PTSD in three main areas – it’s causes, symptoms and the treatments available. These 3 areas are of vital importance to those suffering with the condition.
Causes: Many people have pre-conceived ideas of PTSD, and what can cause it. There is a widespread misunderstanding that PTSD only affect veterans, or those in the armed forces (likely due to it’s previous name of shell-shock) but it can infact affect anyone, of any age. It’s vital that people are aware if they (or a friend or family member) have suffered a trauma, they should be mindful of trauma symptoms, and the possibility of PTSD.
Symptoms: There are two areas in which knowing the symptoms of PTSD are useful. The first is that people may recognize the symptoms in themselves (or a friend or family member) and reach out for help – starting their recovery process. The other is those who are suffering with PTSD, can understand that what they’re thinking or feeling, or how their body is reacting, is ‘normal’ for someone with PTSD – this can be of huge comfort knowing that once the PTSD is resolved, those symptoms will be too. Some symptoms of PTSD feel totally unconnected to the original trauma or the condition itself, so it’s really important people can recognize just how PTSD can affect them.
Treatments: PTSD is a misunderstood condition in many ways – and no more so than the treatments available. As PTSD arises from a specific trauma (or a number of traumas or sustained traumas) it means that the issues and symptoms can be resolved, and effectively treated. There are a variety of therapies and activities than can help ease PTSD symptoms, some immediate, and some longer term, but the current NICE guidelines recommend EMDR and CBT as the main options for the treatment of PTSD.
In addition to those suffering (and those around them), it’s vital that healthcare professionals are aware of all of these elements to look out for in their patients to avoid misdiagnosis, incorrect treatments and lack of the best resources for their patients.
How we can help
Our mission is to provide support and information for anyone experiencing PTSD. We campaign to improve services, raise awareness and promote understanding of the condition and treatments available.
While striving towards this mission, we undertake a variety of activities:
We reach out to high-risk communities to ensure that people are aware that they are at risk (or that they work in an environment where they will come into contact with high risk individuals) so should be aware of the symptoms to look out for, and the treatment options available.
We support those with the condition (and those around them) to lead to successful treatments through knowledge and providing the correct tools
Where possible, we influence organizations, policies and guidelines relating to the care and awareness of those with PTSD, ensuring that we’re all driving towards the same goal – a world where PTSD is recognized, and effectively treated in as short a timescale as possible.
If you’d like to support PTSD UK, thank you. You can find out more here.