Who is affected by PTSD

PTSD is essentially a memory filing error caused by a traumatic event and can affect anyone who has been exposed to a traumatic event. The defining characteristic of a traumatic event is its capacity to provoke fear, helplessness, or horror in response to the threat of injury or death and therefore can affect anyone. Examples of traumatic events include:

  • serious accidentsPTSDit's not that the person is refusing to let go
  • being told you have a life-threatening illness
  • bereavement
  • violent personal assault, such as a physical attack, sexual assault, robbery, or mugging
  • military combat
  • natural or man-made disasters
  • terrorist attack
  • traumatic childbirth

Any exposure to traumatic event can cause PTSD, such as:

  • You experienced the traumatic event
  • You witnessed, in person, the traumatic event
  • You learned someone close to you experienced or was threatened by the traumatic event
  • You are repeatedly exposed to graphic details of traumatic events (for example, if you are a first responder to the scene of traumatic events)

Anyone can be diagnosed with PTSD, and it’s estimated that 1 in 10 people develop PTSD. 1 in 5 firefighters, 1 in 3 teenagers who have survived a horrific car crash, 70% of rape victims, 2 in 3 Prisoners of War, 40% of people who experienced a sudden death of a loved one, and an estimated 10,000 women a year following a traumatic childbirth, develop PTSD.

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