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5 Self-Help Tips for Adults with PTSD

How Adults With PTSD Can Mitigate Their Symptoms

  • Meditation
  • Exercise
  • New Hobby
  • Pets
  • Developing a Strategy to Use During Flashbacks

Since Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is one of the most common mental health issues that affect individuals of all demographics, it comes as no surprise that adults with PTSD are constantly looking for tips to help deal with the issue. Arising as a byproduct of a traumatic experience, which is why it is commonly seen in veterans, it can affect one’s ability to lead a normal life. So, what are some ways in which these people can deal with their symptoms?

Meditation

Meditation is probably one of the very few hobbies that have been around for almost as long as the human race. While it was not widely used until just a few decades ago, it was always recognized as an activity that can help people overcome mental issues. Those who deal with PTDS should try implementing a few minutes of meditation in their daily routine. After a while, in case they notice positive outcomes, they should do it more frequently. Doing so could lead to a much more relaxed and calculated approach to life that helps sidestep a lot of stress and anxiety that PTSD comes with.

Exercise

Mental activities like meditation should always go with some physical exercise. One of the greatest advantages here is the fact that there is an endless list of things that people can do. Examples include running, weight lifting, swimming, long-distance walking, and practically any kind of sport. Besides allowing one to stop focusing on their PTSD, it will also help them reach a much better physical condition that may lead to an improvement in sleeping and higher productivity. Additionally, their metabolism will improve and weight-related issues that some PTSD patients deal with would subside.

New Hobby

The main reason why the aforementioned two tips are so effective is that they both offer a distraction. Adults who live with PTSD frequently focus on their memories related to the traumatic event that led to the onset of the condition. This is extremely dangerous as it perpetuates an increased stress and anxiety level, and it can even cause panic attacks that transform into chronic paranoia. Taking up a hobby, regardless of what it is, could alleviate some of these issues as it forces one to focus on something else for a little bit. Engaging in art, traveling, collecting, or anything similar is a great starting point.

Pets

While The Department of Veterans Affairs continues studying the impact that service animals have on people with PTSD, as per Forbes Magazine, the number of those who obtained emotional support pets continues to rise. This is quite normal considering that one of the best ways to overcome PTSD symptoms is to bond with another living creature. Those who may not be ready to connect with other people, however, should begin by acquiring a pet that can help them during difficult times when their stress and anxiety levels are high.

Developing a Strategy to Use During Flashbacks

Finally, developing a strategy for dealing with flashbacks is extremely important. Since they can occur in pretty much any setting and at any time, those with PTSD must be ready to handle their flashbacks without becoming a liability to themselves or others. For example, if someone starts reliving their traumatic event while driving, they may become unable to operate the vehicle. The reason why is that many flashbacks have physical consequences as they leave one numb and unable to respond to external stimuli for a few seconds. Some strategies that can be helpful include focusing on the surroundings, finding a place to sit down, and learning how to momentarily distract oneself.

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It is also important that individuals suffering from this condition connect with others who are in the same situation. Sharing experiences and building relationships with them will be one of the ways in which adults with PTSD battle their symptoms.