Jeremy’s behavior after the tragedies fits all of the following criteria for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Trying to avoid being reminded of the traumatic event is another key symptom of PTSD.
Reminders can take the form of people, situations or circumstances that resemble or are associated with the event.
Many people with PTSD will try to push memories of the event out of their mind. They do not like thinking or talking about the event in detail.
Some people repeatedly ask themselves questions that prevent them from coming to terms with the event. For example, they may wonder why the event happened to them and whether it could have been prevented.
Someone with PTSD may be very anxious and find it difficult to relax. They may be constantly aware of threats and easily startled. This state of mind is known as hyperarousal. Irritability, angry outbursts, sleeping problems and difficulty concentrating are also common.
Some people with PTSD deal with their feelings by trying not to feel anything at all. This is known as emotional numbing. They may feel detached or isolated from others, or guilty.
Someone with PTSD can often seem deep in thought and withdrawn. They may also give up pursuing the activities that they used to enjoy.
Other possible symptoms of PTSD include:
· sweating, shaking, headaches, dizziness, chest pains and stomach upsets
PTSD sometimes leads to the breakdown of relationships and causes work-related problems.
Jeremy’s behavior after the event of losing his family in such circumstances suggests that Jeremy experienced post-traumatic stress disorder as a result.
The author of this paper is a post-graduate student currently researching social harms including those executed by the state. The work has been carried out under the supervision of an experienced Psychiatric Nurse and consultants with professional and personal experience of psychological trauma caused by the unexpected suicide of family members with mental illness. There has also been additional consulting input from experienced counsellors working in both Private and National practice.
Supervisor: L. Lake.
Consultants: W. Robertson, P.A Miller.
http://www.samm.org.uk/ Support After Murder and Manslaughter.
Training of victim support workers.
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