Some people who experience a trauma (e.g. a sexual assault, an automobile accident) continue to have problems months or even years after the event. How do you know if you have PTSD? If you have experienced a trauma and endorse some of these criteria, you should consider getting support:
1. Recurrent, involuntary, and intrusive memories.
2. Traumatic nightmares.
3. Dissociative reactions (e.g., flashbacks) which may occur on a continuum from brief episodes to complete loss of consciousness.
4. Avoidance of trauma-related thoughts/feelings or external reminders of the trauma (e.g. people, places, objects).
5. Changes in your thoughts or moods (e.g. trouble recalling the event, distorted self blame, diminished interest in typically enjoyable experiences, difficulty feeling positive emotions).
6. Changes in arousal or reactivity, including feeling irritable, self-destructive, hypervigilant, exagerated startle response, difficulty concentrating, and sleep problems.