- Intrusive thoughts such as vivid distressing dreams, memories and flashbacks of the traumatic event. Some negative thoughts and feelings may include ongoing and distorted beliefs about oneself, feeling detached or estranged from others.1, 6
- Avoidance behaviours like avoiding people, places, activities, objects and situations that bring on distressing memories. Individuals may resist talking about what happened or how they feel about it.1
- Medication: SSRIs and SNRIs are commonly used to treat the core symptoms of PTSD. They are used either alone or along with psychotherapy. Other medications may be used to lower anxiety or treat sleep problems.
- Cognitive processing therapy focuses on modifying painful negative emotions and beliefs due to the trauma.
- Prolonged exposure therapy: uses repeated and detailed imagining of the trauma in a safe and controlled environment in order to help a person face and gain control of their fear and distress and learn to cope.
- Group Therapy: involves sharing traumatic experiences and reactions to other individuals in a comfortable and non-judgmental setting.
Other psychotherapies such as interpersonal, supportive and psychodynamic therapies focus on the emotional and interpersonal aspects of PTSD without reminding people of their traumas.1