Unspoken Symptoms of PTSD: Hypervigilance

You’ve heard about the grand list of PTSD symptoms, but some of them can be overlooked or misunderstood. Have you ever heard of hypervigilance? Having hypervigilance means that you are constantly on the alert, looking for danger and waiting for the next attack to hit at any moment. People that are hypervigilant usually have a hard time relaxing, especially in public. They feel the need to always watch their backs and have a plan of escape or defense wherever they go. Does this sound like you? If you have PTSD, you likely have hypervigilance too.

 

Hypervigilance is a natural bodily response for having been exposed to dangerous environments for a long period of time, but always being on the lookout can be pretty exhausting. Your body can become tense from unease, creating stiff and sore muscles. Your lack of focus on anything else can also interfere with work and relationships with people. The stress and anxiety of it all can leave you feeling ready to collapse at any moment.

 

So what can you do to get some relief from hypervigilance? There are a few options available. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is one that can help you learn to control the way you respond to the world around you, while Exposure Therapy is a great way to conquer your fears. Eye Movement Desensitization Therapy is yet another great form of therapy. If none of this enough, you can also consider taking different kinds of medications. If you want a more natural approach, you can try mindful training to help you be able to “live in the moment.”

 

PTSD is a difficult battle, but not an impossible one. There are lots of options out there to help you fight the symptoms and eventually overcome PTSD for good.

PTSD In Partnerships

Dealing with PTSD can be really difficult, but not just for the one with the diagnosis. If one person has it, it can cause friends and family to struggle too – just in a different way. If you are dating someone who has PTSD, you know that it can cause some tension in the relationship. This is especially true for people who suffer from Complex PTSD.

 

Complex PTSD (C-PTSD)  is very similar to normal PTSD, except the victim is unable to escape the stressful environment that is causing it. With time, people that suffer from normal PTSD can learn to cope with the event in the past and overcome the fears that arose from it. But with C-PTSD, there is no break from the event to give the sufferer any relief or time to heal.

 

Your partner having PTSD could be something you’re just now finding out about as you go further into the relationship. This can be upsetting and hard to deal with, especially if you feel that it is something that they have tried to keep from you. But remember that them admitting their weaknesses to you is a big sign of trust from them, regardless of how long it took them to come to you about it. For those that suffer from PTSD, problems like trust issues, anxiety, and paranoia are all part of the disorder, so the thing that they need most from you is your loving support and understanding.

 

The PTSD diagnosis could have also been given to your significant other during your relationship. If this is the case, remember that this is all scary, if not scarier, news for the sufferer than it is for you. Go to them with open arms, but also remember to give them the space they need too.

 

PTSD can be the root cause of many relationship problems, as it can make the sufferer feel less understood, which can fuel unnecessary arguments. Many PTSD sufferers also experience emotional outbursts, as they are unable to keep their emotions in check. Sometimes, these bursts are taken out on the person nearest to them. That person tends to be their significant other, which can cause even more fights. More fights can mean more time apart and even isolation from each other, causing a downfall in the relationship.

 

At least with normal PTSD, there is some hope that by getting proper treatment, the relationship can be restored and the two of you can go back to being normal and happy again. But when your partner suffers from C-PTSD, it can feel as though there isn’t an end in sight. Your partner likely feels hopeless and worthless, and understanding this can go a long way in keeping a relationship alive. Try to practice open communication, and always be there to offer support and motivation. Encourage them to seek help, and maybe even try couple’s therapy if you feel that things are just getting to be too much. Remind them that the pain is only temporary, and whatever is causing their C-PTSD is bound to be put to an end eventually.

4 Ways to Treat PTSD

Whether you’ve had PTSD for a long time, or you’ve just been diagnosed recently, you might be wondering how you can get back to your normal self and begin to enjoy life once again. There are many different approached you can take, but the best thing to do if to find what works the best for you. Here are 4 ways to treat PTSD:

 

Medications –

Medications are the most popular, and probably the best option for those with severe and debilitating PTSD. There are no medications specifically for treating PTSD itself, but many can help alleviate the symptoms. SSRIs are great for reducing depression and anxiety that comes along with having PTSD, and SNRIs are another option for reducing depression. Always talk with your doctor before starting or stopping any medications.

 

Psychotherapy –

There are a few different kinds of psychotherapy available, and these kinds of treatments usually go hand in hand with being treated medicinally as well. Cognitive behavioral therapy is a form of talk therapy that focuses on thoughts, feelings, and behavior. Cognitive processing therapy is very similar, but has more to do with processing and analyzing the traumatic event. EMDR is another form of psychotherapy, and it uses your eye movements to help you process the traumatic event.

 

Alternative Treatments –

Alternative treatments include things such as trauma-sensitive yoga and acupuncture to help relieve the stress and anxiety that come along with PTSD. This kind of treatment tends to be more natural, less invasive and comes with fewer side effects.

 

Innovative Treatments –

These kinds of treatments are going to be much more creative. Types of innovative treatment include Virtual Reality Exposure Therapy to help desensitize the person from their fears and help them overcome their traumatic experience. Other innovative treatments involve using drugs such as ketamine infusions or MDMA to help lessen PTSD symptoms and calm the person down enough to be able to face their trauma more effectively.

 

As you can see, there are lots of different options for treatment out there. The internet can help you decide what you think will work the best for your journey to recovery, but always discuss your options with your doctor first.

When You Leave A Narcissist Alone

It takes a lot to free yourself from the grip of a narcissist, and once you do, it should feel like a big victory. But it’s not easy to forget that although the relationship was an abusive and unhealthy one, you still loved and cared for that person for a long time before realizing what they were doing to you. Because of this, you might find yourself wondering what has happened to them now that they are alone.

 

Now that the narcissist is on their own, they have no one to put down in order to bring themselves up and build their self esteem. They don’t have anyone to take all of their punches, and they find themselves spiraling deeper into self loathing and worthlessness. With no more good supply for their control addiction, they will become weak. Having little social life and little to look forward to at all.

 

They will likely become angry or depressed in their life but know that none of this is your fault. You are not responsible for keeping the narcissist happy, and neither is anyone else. Your only responsibility is to take care of yourself, and removing yourself from your relationship with the narcissist is the right thing to do because it isn’t healthy to let them feed off of you. Let them be miserable for a while. After all, it’s their own doing. Plus, it probably won’t be long until they find another victim to take your place.

Could Psychopathy be Causing Divorces?

In these blogs, we tend to focus on narcissistic personality disorder. Having a narcissist in your life can be really difficult, especially when you’re in an intimate relationship with them. Staying in the relationship can also prove to be quite a challenge, given their selfish personality and constant belittling. Because of this, narcissists have a hard time maintaining relationships, and the few that make it to marriage usually end in divorce.

 

But narcissists aren’t the only kinds of people that fuel divorces. People with antisocial disorder, also known as psychopaths, have very similar behavior patterns as narcissists, but they are much more extreme. Not only are psychopaths selfish, but they also feel no guilt or remorse for doing anything wrong. A narcissist might be able to recognize their actions and apologize or make changes. They might even have limitations for how far they will go to try to get their way. But not a psychopath. Without those nagging negative emotions, psychopaths have nothing that will stop them.

 

Psychopaths are much more manipulative than narcissists, and you likely won’t even know that they have the disorder until they have you wrapped around your finger and there’s no way to escape. They are very convincing and lie way too easily because they are incapable of feeling bad about anything. If they do show feelings, it is only to fool you. Don’t fall for this trickery.

 

As if simply lacking emotions isn’t bad enough, psychopaths also have a complete disregard for the feelings of others, and they don’t logically think of the consequences of their actions. Because of this, not all, but many psychopaths can quickly become angry and turn violent out of nowhere. They can have explosive and unpredictable personalities, but you might not find this out until it’s too late and you have become the victim.

 

So how common is antisocial disorder, anyway? Psychopathy is more common in men, occurring in 3% of the male population. It only affects about 1% of the women though. Despite the small percentages, 1 out of every 17 divorce cases deals with a psychopath. Antisocial disorder can cause a lot of issues, especially when it comes to close relationships. And this number proves it.

 

If you have found yourself married to a psychopath, it can be a difficult situation. It may have taken you a long time to put all the puzzle pieces together to find out the truth, especially with them right there in your ear, telling you everything you need to hear. Psychopaths, after all, and very manipulative, and will do anything they need to do in order to have their way, regardless of what the consequences might be.

 

When you take a psychopath to court for a divorce, they will lie flawlessly, and likely have no problem getting away with it. They will tear you down in every way they know how because they don’t care about your feelings. Be prepared for this, and don’t let them have their way. Stay strong and fight through it, and you will come out better by the end of it.

Jasmine Headley – A Stressful Situation That Just Kept Getting Worse

Being a mother is hard work, and it can be especially difficult when you’re a single mother doing everything you can to provide for your child and give them everything they need to be healthy and happy. Sometimes working a full time job just isn’t enough to get by, and we have to rely on the city to give us a lift until we can get back on our feet. But we shouldn’t have to take a beating to get a little help. The government is supposed to be there to help the citizens, not cause more problems and give them trauma that will last forever. It is a mother’s right to be able to provide for and protect her child, and no one knows this better than Jazmine Headley.

 

The video of police trying to pry Headley’s son out of her hands has gone viral and has raised many questions. This video is yet another sign of evidence that our police force is failing in protecting its citizens, and actually only making situations worse. So what exactly was going on? How did all of this happen?

 

Recently, Jazmine Headley went to a public benefits office in Brooklyn to figure out why they had suddenly stopped paying for daycare services for her one year old boy. Jazmine needed to be able to put her son in daycare so that she could work and make enough money to feed both of them.

 

That was all she was trying to do. The waiting room was crowded with people, and there was no room to sit down anywhere. So as a last resort, Headley sat on the floor. What was just a simple heated argument over blocking a fire escape soon turned into much more when the police arrived.

 

Instead of de-escalating the situation, the police got physical, first grabbing her arm. There was no attempt from the police to talk her down or ask about the issue at hand. She fell to the ground and instead of allowing her to get up, they tried to pry her son out of her hands in a forceful manner so that they could immediately arrest her.

 

Guards had been trying to handle the situation on their own for about 40 minutes before the police arrived, but with the immense amount of stress that Headley was under already, it’s no wonder that she was so upset in the first place.

 

This event must have been traumatizing for Jazmine Headley, the bystanders, and especially the baby. And as we all scroll on our social media, seeing video footage of things like this happening all the time, we are reminded of how scary the world that we live in is. The police are supposed to be the ones that we call to for help. When fighting to make enough money to provide for our families isn’t stressful enough, we then have to fight with the government, and it makes it especially difficult for those that suffer from PTSD and other mental issues.

 

It’s Time to Speak up about Mental Illness – Kennedy’s “Don’t Deny Me” Campaign

If you suffer from PTSD or any other mental illness, you know how difficult it can be to get the care, treatment, and coverage that you need in order to get back on your feet. It’s no wonder that suicide rates are climbing higher and higher when people aren’t getting the proper treatments for mental health and substance abuse.

 

The rate of suicide has been steadily increasing for years, so much so that it has actually brought the average life expectancy down in the US – yet again. The life expectancy in 2017 was 78.6, where it was 78.7 the year before. The percentage of the country’s deaths by suicide increased from 1.6% to 1.7% between 2016 and 2017. If those aren’t drastic enough numbers for you, the number of drug overdose deaths increased by 10% from 2016 to 2017, setting a new record with over 70,000 drug related deaths.

 

It’s hard enough dealing with an illness like PTSD, depression, or anxiety every single day, but it’s even harder when you feel that there is no hope because it’s hard to get the coverage that you need. These kinds of illnesses have been taken far less seriously than others like cancer and diabetes. Because of this, as far as mental health and addiction recovery go, we are in a complete crisis.

 

Luckily, Former Congressman Patrick Kennedy has stepped up once again by launching the “Don’t Deny Me” campaign, in honor of the 10-year anniversary of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008. This act was created a decade ago to ensure equality and parity for mental health and addiction treatments, but many don’t know about this act, and those in law and healthcare can use this lack of knowledge to their advantage and still choose to deny you the care you need. We still have a long way to go if we are going to eliminate the suicide epidemic.

 

With the “Don’t Deny Me” campaign, Kennedy hopes to spread awareness of mental health and further share the knowledge that the Parity Act is there to help those that suffer. If you feel that you have been wrongfully denied treatment for a mental illness, then it’s time to step up. Many that suffer from addiction or mental illness feel that they are in this battle alone. But that is not the case, and Kennedy and everyone else involved in the “Don’t Deny Me” campaign wants you to know that. We can’t make any forward progress if we don’t come together as a community and stand up for ourselves and what’s right.

 

That’s what this new campaign is all about – working together to make positive changes in the healthcare community so that everyone can – and knows that they can – receive the proper treatment that they deserve.

 

Mental illness like PTSD, addiction, depression, and more are something that needs to be taken seriously once and for all. It can easily be bypassed by some, but don’t allow someone to deny you treatment if you are struggling. If we stand by each other, support each other, and work together as a community, we can finally make the difference that this world needs.