Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Are you living with symptoms of PTSD due to a witnessing or experiencing a stressful or traumatic event, domestic violence, sexual assault, bullying, childhood trauma, violent relationship, rape, torture, or other reason?

Or are you in the armed services, an emergency or aid worker who has witnessed an incredibly distressing event?

Have traumatic experiences left you feeling persistently fearful, angry, sad, numb or intensely anxious? There's a name for this range of emotions: post-traumatic stress or PTSD, a condition that can be treated with appropriate support and time. A journey of recovery is possible.

What is PTSD?

PTSD is a complex series of emotions, which are often persistent, uncomfortable and founded on anxiety. It typically develops after experiencing one or many traumatic events that threatened your life or safety, or those of people around you.

These events can include serious accidents, natural disasters, crime, war, torture, physical or sexual assault, and other horrifying events.

People in professions such as the military, firefighters, paramedics, emergency workers, police officers and psychologists are particularly vulnerable to this debilitating condition.

It's estimated that around 10% of Australians experience PTSD at some stage in their lives. People with PTSD can experience other mental health issues at the same time, such as anxiety, depression, alcohol and drug use.

Sometimes the feelings dissipate by themselves after talking with family, friends or colleagues. But when these feelings continue and begin to interfere with everyday life, work and relationships, then it’s time to find help, as these kinds of shocking and overwhelming events can be difficult to come to terms with on our own.

Speak with your GP or other trusted and qualified health professional, and attend Quest for Life’s residential Moving Beyond Trauma program or 1-day Living Mindfully workshop.

Symptoms to look out for

  • Flashbacks of the traumatic event/s
  • Intrusive memories or nightmares about the traumatic event/s
  • Numbing oneself with alcohol, drugs or busyness
  • Flight or fight behaviours; extreme reactions, angry outbursts, reckless behaviour
  • Avoiding people, places or conversations that might trigger memories
  • Feeling emotionally numb; becoming detached from friends and family
  • Feeling ‘dissociated’; watching life from a distance
  • Feeling jumpy and anxious for no reason
  • Heightened vigilance; looking for or anticipating danger
  • Persistently blaming yourself or others for the traumatic event
  • Extreme distress in response to triggers, such as images, smells, stories
  • Impatience, intolerance, sleeplessness, irritability

Immediate help

  • Call 000 if your life is in danger
  • For crisis support, call Lifeline on 13 11 14
  • Beyondblue website includes many useful forums and resources

Treatment

Some effective treatments for PTSD include psychotherapy, cognitive behaviour therapy, and medication.

It can take time to discover the best treatment for each person, so it’s best to work closely with your GP or other trusted and qualified health professional to find what works for you.

How Quest for Life can help

It takes strength and resilience to work through PTSD, and Quest for Life can help through our residential programs and 1-day workshops.

  • Our 5-day residential Moving Beyond Trauma program offers an effective and wholistic approach to managing and healing post-trauma suffering in a confidential and safe environment.
  • Our 1-day workshop Living Mindfully with Post-Trauma Symptoms outlines the exciting developments in understanding how trauma impacts the brain and body and the evidence-based therapies and practices that heal both the brain and nervous system.

Quest for Life knows how to help: our internal research results show that participants feel better after attending a program and that this improvement increases over time.

Toolkit

Some of these practices can help you to calm your mind and improve your wellbeing and can be found on our toolkit page:

  • Keys to help you sleep better  
  • Meditation practices
  • Trauma recovery workbook
  • Recovering from Trauma video series

Some of Petrea King's Podcasts may be helpful and can be found on our Podcast page

  • Sarah Macdonald Nightlife - Petrea King on Post Traumatic Stress
  • Tony Delroy Nightlife - Dealing with Trauma

Quest for Life can help you work through PTSD through our programs Moving Beyond Trauma and Living Mindfully with Post Trauma Symptoms. For program dates, visit questforlife.com/schedule-of-events.

Fill in the Contact Form below and one of our Program Advisors will be in touch to answer your questions or to ascertain the most appropriate program for your needs.

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