Even though the event may be over, you may now be experiencing or may experience later, some strong physical, psychological and behavioral reactions to the traumatic event. No one is immune from these reactions. It is quite normal for people to experience these aftershocks when they have passed through a horrible event. This does not imply weakness or craziness. It simply indicates that the traumatic event was just to powerful and overwhelming.
Symptoms of traumatic impact can vary from person to person. Some people will experience many symptoms, others just a few. For some, the effect is rapid. For others symptoms may occur weeks, months or even years later. The effects can even be cumulative over time. With Acute Stress, the symptoms go away within a few weeks. If the symptoms last more than one month, seek medical help and counseling specific for Post Traumatic Stress immediately. The sooner treatment begins, the better the chances are for a full recovery.
Examples of Reactions to a Critical Incident or Other Traumatic Stress:
Physical Symptoms *Any of These syptoms may require medical attention.
Confusion Nightmares Uncertainty Hyper-vigilance, watchful Suspiciousness Intrusive images Blaming someone Poor problem solving Poor abstract thinking Difficulty with numbers Poor concentration/memory Disorientation of time, place or person Difficulty identifying objects or person Heightened or lowered alertness Increased or decreased awareness of surrounding
Fear Guilt Grief Panic Denial Anxiety Agitation Irritability Depression Intense anger Apprehension Emotional shock Emotional outbursts Feeling overwhelmed Loss of emotional control Thoughts of suicide/homicide Inappropriate emotional responses
Withdrawal Antisocial acts Inability to rest Intensified pacing Erratic movements Change in social activity Change in speech patterns Loss or increase of appetite Hyper-alert or sensitive to environment Increased alcohol consumption Change in usual communications