June 4, 2018

Development of PTSD

Posted in cognitive behavioral therapy, Post Traumatic Stress, Well-being tagged , , , , , at 8:12 am by kellyfdennis

What factors affect who develops PTSD? (ptsd.va.gov)

PTSD can happen to anyone. It is not a sign of weakness. A number of factors can increase the chance that someone will have PTSD, many of which are not under that person’s control. For example, having a very intense or long-lasting traumatic event or getting injured during the event can make it more likely that a person will develop PTSD. PTSD is also more common after certain types of trauma, like combat and sexual assault.

Personal factors, like previous traumatic exposure, age, and gender, can affect whether or not a person will develop PTSD. What happens after the traumatic event is also important. Stress can make PTSD more likely, while social support can make it less likely.

PTSD symptoms usually start soon after the traumatic event, but they may not appear until months or years later. They also may come and go over many years. If the symptoms last longer than four weeks, cause you great distress, or interfere with your work or home life, you might have PTSD. If this is happening for you, it is important that you seek out help. Professional counseling is available and recovery is possible!


  1. treichert said,

    Thanks for more helpful blogs. Something that hit home for me was the comment “it is not a sign of weakness.” After being in a fairly significant car accident, I struggle terribly as a passenger. I am often prone to outburst of warning and worry (most of which probably were not warranted) which leaves me embarrassed and apologetic to the driver. I even sit in the backseat whenever the option is available to me to avoid such outburst and anxiousness. Does that tie into feelings of weakness or shame?

    • kellyfdennis said,

      Thanks for your comment, Tracey! It sounds like what you are describing is the fear associated with the accident. Sometimes the fear about the trauma happening again can cause a person to feel ashamed or weak.

      • treichert said,

        Make sense. That is why awareness to Mental Health Illnesses and PTSD is important. I, typically, am the passenger with the same two drivers… they express that I am being over-reactive and irrational.
        I can share these blogs – maybe they will understand that it isn’t their driving abilities that elicit my reactions.

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