PTSD can be understood as a disruption of the natural recovery process following a traumatic event.



Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) symptoms are almost universal immediately after a traumatic experience with the "natural" recovery process taking a few months on average. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is a diagnosis that means you have both experienced a traumatic event and that experiencing that event has led to really impactful changes in the way you think, feel, and behave afterwards.

A traumatic experience may be something you experienced personally, witnessed, or something you learned about another person experiencing. The symptoms of PTSD fall into the four symptom clusters listed in the table below and include more specific examples of how these symptoms may be experienced by a person living with PTSD.

Symptom Types Examples

Intrusion Symptoms

  • Repeated & unwanted memories

  • Dreams or nightmares of trauma

  • Flashbacks

  • Physical reaction to reminders

  • Distressed by reminders of trauma

Avoidance Symptoms

  • Avoiding thoughts, memories, or feelings about trauma

  • Avoiding people, places, or situations (conversations, objects, etc. that remind you of trauma

Negative changes to mood & thinking

  • Trouble remembering aspects of the trauma

  • Strong negative beliefs about self, others, or the world

  • Persistent blame of self and others

  • Persistent negative mood

  • Loss of interest in meaningful or important activities

  • Feeling detached or estranged from others

  • Inability to experience positive emotions

Changes in arousal & reactivity

  • Irritable & Angry outbursts

  • Acting reckless or self-destructive

  • Hypervigilance (being on guard)

  • Feeling “jumpy” & easily startled

  • Problems with concentration

  • Trouble with sleep

Treatment for PTSD

There are several empiracally supported treatments for PTSD. At Lotus we offer Cognitive Processing Therapy or CPT for short.