Can PTSD Be Cured?

Can PTSD Be Cured?

Author: GIA Miami
Published: December 15, 2022

Like most other mental health conditions, there is no cure for PTSD. You cannot undo the effects of trauma and there is always the possibility of symptoms re-emerging. However, effective treatment can cause symptoms of PTSD to remain dormant for years - and even for the rest of your life.

Read on to find out about the different treatment methods for PTSD and how they can help you to enjoy and thrive in life.

What Is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder?

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health disorder that you can develop after experiencing a traumatic event. While most people who have a traumatic experience will experience some symptoms in the following weeks, people with PTSD continue to experience symptoms after at least a month has passed. PTSD symptoms can look very different for each individual and may include flashbacks, depression, and extreme alertness.

Mental health professionals diagnose PTSD using the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5).

What Are Some Common Symptoms of PTSD?

PTSD symptoms typically fall into one of four categories. People may experience many of these symptoms or only a few. Because of the different ways that post-traumatic stress disorder can manifest, it can sometimes be hard to diagnose the disorder.

Reliving Traumatic Events

This may include:

  • flashbacks
  • intrusive thoughts or dreams
  • nightmares
  • feeling intense fear or distress if reminded of the traumatic event
  • physical sensations

Alertness

Many people with PTSD find themselves in a constant state of heightened alertness. This may involve:

  • hypervigilance
  • disturbed sleep
  • finding it hard to concentrate
  • being startled easily
  • other symptoms of anxiety disorders

Avoidance

Avoidance PTSD symptoms may include:

  • avoiding anything that reminds you of the traumatic event
  • trying to stay busy at all times
  • being unable to express affection
  • feeling emotionally or physically numb or detached from others
  • engaging in self-destructive behaviors or substance abuse

Feelings About Yourself And Others

Some people with post-traumatic stress disorder have difficult feelings about themselves and the world around them. These include:

  • not trusting others
  • feeling like nowhere is safe
  • feeling misunderstood
  • blaming themselves for the traumatic event
  • experiencing overwhelming feelings and thoughts of guilt, anger, sadness, or shame
How Can You Treat PTSD and Recover from the Condition?

How Can You Treat PTSD and Recover from the Condition?

Living with PTSD can significantly affect your life, causing ongoing emotional distress and preventing you from pursuing the things you love. The good news is, there are now several effective treatments proven to help people recover from PTSD and manage their symptoms. While there is no cure for the disorder, PTSD treatment can help people to live a normal life and achieve their full potential.

When you seek treatment for PTSD, a mental health professional will accurately assess your condition and work with you to find the best treatment options for you. Here are some of the PTSD treatment options available.

Talk Therapy for PTSD

Talk therapy is when you work verbally with a therapist to identify and address issues that may underlie symptoms of mental disorders. There are now many different established types of talk therapy, including cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and psycho-dynamic therapy. The American Psychiatric Association strongly recommends four different therapeutic interventions for treating PTSD, all of which are variations of CBT. These are:

  • cognitive processing therapy - a specific type of CBT that helps to identify and challenge unhelpful beliefs related to traumatic events
  • cognitive therapy - a type of CBT that aims to change pessimistic evaluations associated with traumatic memories, reducing their disruptive effects on life
  • prolonged exposure therapy - a variation of CBT that teaches a gradual approach to traumatic memories, feelings, and situations so that you can encounter, and not avoid, them in everyday life
  • cognitive behavioral therapy - an evidence-based psychotherapy that focuses on the interactions between our thought patterns and behaviors, making positive adaptations that support lasting change

If you feel like therapy isn't helping, let your talk therapist or other mental health professional know. They may be able to adapt your program or recommend other types of therapy or treatment. Every individual is different and it can take some time to find the treatment program that works for you.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Processing (EMDP) Therapy

EMDP is a relatively new therapy that has been shown to effectively treat PTSD in several randomized controlled trials. During EMDP sessions, the client makes repeated, rhythmic eye movements while recalling the traumatic event to a mental health professional.

EMDP is based on the theory that PTSD occurs when your mind and body do not fully process a traumatic experience. Scientists believe that when an event is too scary or intense for us to handle, certain mental processes may just shut down. This means that we continue to be affected by the experience as though it is an ongoing event, explaining symptoms like flashbacks, hypervigilance, and mistrust.

The rhythmic eye movements in EMDP therapy aim to mimic the way our bodies process events and memories during our sleep. The therapy aims to help individuals finish processing the event so it no longer disrupts their lives.

Medication

Mental health professionals do not usually prescribe medication to people with PTSD. However, doctors may offer you medication if:

  • you have depression as well as PTSD symptoms
  • you have difficulty sleeping
  • you are unable to try talking therapy

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Therapy

Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) therapy is an innovative, non-invasive treatment that uses gentle magnetic waves to stimulate nerve cells in certain brain regions, leading to pronounced changes in mood and behavior. Research has found that TMS may result in long-term improvements in PTSD symptoms and lead to significant reductions in anxiety, with lasting effects after 3 months.

Scientists think that TMS is effective because of the way that traumatic experiences affect the brain. Brain imaging shows that people living with PTSD may have altered brain functions along certain major pathways. By stimulating activity in these areas, TMS may help them return to normal functioning.

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Therapy

GIA Miami

GIA Miami is a pioneering mental health treatment center that specializes in TMS therapy. Our individualized treatment programs utilize the latest advances in mental wellness science to every treatment plan, giving clients the best chance of reaching their recovery goals. We combine clinical excellence, unrivaled expertise, and compassionate care to promote lasting change and holistic well-being.

Our team of medical professionals has more than a century of combined experience in treating mental health conditions like PTSD. We stay by your side from beginning to end, offering in-depth assessments, ongoing evaluation, and comprehensive aftercare support. Our state-of-the-art facilities match our exceptional services, and you will receive the highest quality of care.

Contact us today if you are living with a mental health disorder or looking to improve your mental performance. With our support, you can reclaim the best version of yourself.

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