Sunday, August 22, 2010

The primary, secondary and tertiary effects of PTSD

Bob Trowbridge's article "Secondary and tertiary effects of post-traumatic stress related to war" for Helium (a health & fitness site) does much to illustrate the pains and symptoms of PTSD.

Trowbridge (a spiritual counselor, not a therapist) breaks it down like this:

Primary effects:
High blood pressure and other physical symptoms
Withdrawal from society

Secondary effects:
The effect on friends and family
The potential for violence

Tertiary effects:
Difficulty rejoining society
Alcohol and drug abuse
Inability to perform in social situations

Trowbridge points out that this three-tiered breakdown of effects is completely artificial. In other words, it's not a diagnostic tool, just a way for us to look at symptom/effects in meaningful clumps that tell a story of the problems PTSDers encounter.

And hopefully, once we understand, proper treatment can begin.

Worth a read.

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