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PTSD is a Serious Mental Health Problem and Worldwide Public Health Concern

What is PTSD? 

Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) develops in some people after observing or experiencing a traumatic event, such as natural disaster, sexual abuse, or war.

PTSD Symptoms

Many people experience anxiety, negative mood, or have difficulty sleeping that may impact their daily routines after a trauma. For the majority, these symptoms get better after a few weeks or months.

If the symptoms are ongoing after a few months and disrupt normal daily activities, a person may have developed PTSD. Sometimes, symptoms will start later, or get better and then worse again.

Specific symptoms include:

  • arousal and reactivity – agitation, hyper-vigilance, anger
  • avoidance of triggers that are a reminder of the traumatic event – social isolation, inability to work
  • negative thoughts and feelings – irritability, self-destructive behavior, emotional detachment
  • intrusive thoughts and nightmares – fear, flashbacks, severe anxiety, insomnia


PTSD and The Brain

Potential Causes of PTSD

Existing Treatments

FDA-approved medications (sertraline and paroxetine) are usually taken daily in order to alleviate PTSD symptoms. These treatment regimens work for many patients but roughly 33–50% of PTSD patients do not respond adequately to currently available medicines or evidence-based psychotherapies.

How can I get help for my PTSD?

In clinical trials, MDMA-assisted psychotherapy reduces PTSD symptoms for many people. Cannabis is also being studied to see if it can reduce anxiety and improve sleep quality in people with PTSD. Find out if you are eligible to enroll in a study.

Studies can only enroll a limited number of people who meet a specific criterion.

Here is a list of other resources that can help you manage PTSD symptoms and find support in your local community.

< List to go here >


Did you participate in MAPS clinical trial for PTSD? Connect with others who have PTSD to share experiences. Visit PatientsLikeMe.com to learn more. 

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