How Long After Trauma Does PTSD Start (And Why)?

Exact Answer:  Within 3 month

PTSD referred to as Post-traumatic stress disorder is one of the disorders related to mental health which can occur due to experiencing any of the traumatic events. Events like accidents, death, a natural disaster fall under this category which can even be life-threatening. It is very much usual to feel worried and anger after a serious event.

But if the symptoms continue longer like for a month or year, this leads to PTSD. Even young children can have Post-traumatic stress disorder which needs effective treatment to recover soon. Getting proper treatment at the right time could save you from the risk.

How Long After Trauma Does PTSD Start?

PTSD symptoms are seen widely among people which vary as time passes. PTSD symptoms strike people in case of stress or through repeated shocking incidents which disturb your mind. The symptoms of PTSD start depending on the effectiveness of the trauma, it can be delayed for various reasons or can start immediately after the trauma.

Usually, symptoms can be seen within one to three months of the post-event. In very rare cases, it begins after a year which requires a lot of time to recover. The recovery period varies according to the seriousness of the symptoms. Depression, guilt, anxiety, fears are considered normal reactions to a traumatic event. Initially, after a week of the event, people develop symptoms similar to PTSD.

The memories linked with the event will recur which leads to Trauma. Trauma can even be life-threatening often. According to the study, 50 percent of people usually get back to a normal schedule within 6 months of proper treatment, whereas few people tend to take a longer time to heal. Treatment should be done immediately after the identification of symptoms.

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In few cases, people couldn’t identify the symptoms of PTSD which leads to change in their personality. If the reason behind the trauma indicates series of events, it would fall under the category of complex PTSD. It is mandatory to meet the criteria issued by the Statistical Manual Fifth Edition and American Psychological Association’s (APA) Diagnostic to undergo the required treatment to cure PTSD. Few physical symptoms can also be seen in patients.

Age of peopleRecovery period
Under 20 years2-3 months
21-45 years3 months
Above 45Nearly 5 months

Why Does It Take That Long To Start PTSD After Trauma?

Remember that, every people who have undergone a dangerous traumatic event does not develop PTSD, few people overcome it after a couple of days. Several factors tell that whether a person will develop PTSD. Experts usually provide treatment only if the symptoms can be seen for at least one month or if it has been affecting the functioning of life.

The reaction to the traumatic events differs significantly depending on the capacity of the people. Most people react immediately after the experience, whereas few people undergo depression and react even a month or year later. If proper treatment has not been provided at the right time, people may have long-term PTSD side effects which are very risky. The symptoms of PTSD vary according to age. Professionals try to provide medications and other therapies like psychotherapy or sometimes both. Treatment for each people also varies. A particular treatment can be provided for all the patients. People will undergo a physical and mental screening before proceeding with the treatment. As per the survey, Women are affected more than men.

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People experience symptoms like anxiety, difficulty in concentration, anger, crying, but these are not necessarily included under PTSD. If you haven’t developed any symptoms of PTSD until six months, it may fall under the PTSD category. It is recommended to visit your health care provider immediately, before getting worse. Few people get addicted to unhealthy habits like, use of drugs and alcohol due to depression which could be prevented through the support of experts.

Conclusion

There are different phases of PTSD.  Few people even can recover from PTSD without any treatment. Traumatic events affect older people much than children.  It is very hard to lead your life with existing PTSD. Consult your doctor or any experts; if you are very much disturbed for a long time, it is not sure that everything falls under Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

The proper screening test will be done to find out the exact disorder. As time passes, PTSD gets more effective. Try to get treatment as soon as possible. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can even affect your daily routine, your health condition, and your family.

Reference

  1. https://www.ptsd.va.gov/professional/assessment/documents/ACAPS.pdf
  2. https://journals.lww.com/jtrauma/Fulltext/2005/04000/Profilaxis_tromboembolica_en_pacientes_con.16.aspx
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