Kids From Trauma NEED Someone to Tell Them Their Normal Isn’t “Normal”

It took me a quarter of a century (literally) to realize that I experienced trauma throughout certain points in my childhood. It took me another year to realize that my behaviors were deeply rooted in how I responded to that trauma. And it took me even longer to realize that my emotions during those years were not normal.

It seems obvious, doesn’t it?

The thing was… no one told me that the things I was doing weren’t normal. And a lot of times, as a kid, if someone doesn’t outright tell you something, then you have no idea.

I didn’t know that it wasn’t normal to self-harm at twelve years old. All of the friends I’d chosen were doing it so I assumed ALL preteens were doing it. None of us hurt ourselves to fit in with each other (we actually knew each other for quite a while before admitting to one another that we were self-harming), but we were all doing it to cope with something. We were all kids with messy stories, which drew us together like magnets.  more

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Military veterans and suicide: How to help before it’s too late

The family of a veteran who took his own life is sharing his story in hopes of saving others.

Ricky Holmes, a United States Marine, was 22-years-old when he committed suicide.

“He grew up in North Providence and West Warwick,” said Ricky’s father, Russ Holmes.

Ricky’s stepmother, Sherry Holmes, described him as a gentle giant.

“He was always so kind to everyone,” Sherry said.

Russ shared similar sentiments.

“He was a happy-go-lucky kid with the whole world in front of him,” said Russ.  more

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Veteran Traumas and how best to Help

After applying for DD214 online and receiving the document, it could be easy to think that the veteran has left everything to do with their service behind.

Unfortunately, this is not the case.

Many veterans suffer with mental illness after returning from duty and this affects everyone, including the service members and their families.

It is entirely possible that some people may not experience some of these symptoms until a few years after leaving the armed forces. They may also delay seeking help for several reasons, such as thinking that they can cope, fear of criticism or feeling that therapists will not understand.

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

PTSD is perhaps the most infamous mental health problem veterans face after returning from duty.  more

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Dogs hate fireworks, so Ford designed a prototype for a soundproof kennel to help

Fireworks-heavy holidays like New Year’s Eve and the Fourth of July can put dogs on edge

I have what’s been described as an intimidating dog. She’s part Rottweiler, part God knows what. Earlier this week, my husband and I watched her jump and bark at two coyotes we spotted during her evening walk. She’s the same size as they were, but hearing her growl, the coyotes quickly scurried away from her.

While she often appears to be fearless, she becomes a ball of nerves on holidays like New Year’s Eve and the Fourth of July, when our neighbors shoot fireworks well into the wee hours of the morning — and often for days afterward. We live in Los Angeles, where firecrackers are illegal but firmly entrenched in the city’s culture. Drought-devastated Southern California doesn’t get many rainstorms, but when thunder does occur, it sets my dog on edge too.   more

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Hearing Voices: PTSD and Auditory Hallucinations

Hallucinations and Combat Veterans with PTSD

Among combat veterans with PTSD30-40% report auditory hallucinations(AH). AH are more frequent in combat veterans with chronic PTSD and it has been suggested that this may reflect a distinct subtype of PTSD that may be under recognized for two reasons: first, patients are reluctant to report AH and, second, more emphasis has, traditionally, been placed on the intrusive images associated with PTSD and less on intrusive auditory hallucinations.

It is important to recognize that such patients do not have the overt changes in affect or bizarre delusions characteristic of other psychoses e.g. schizophrenia.  AH in PTSD appears to be seen more in veterans with higher combat exposure and more intense PTSD symptoms and who report more severe symptoms of hyperarousal. The AH are typically: ego-dystonic; contribute to an increases sense of isolation and shame; associated with feelings of lack of controllability; consist of combat-related themes and guilt; non bizarre; not associated with thought disorders and, overall, more refractory to treatment interventions.  more

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How I Live With PTSD, An Invisible Illness Most People Don’t Know I Have

I don’t let very many people into my apartment. It’s partially because I’m an introvert and like my alone time, but it’s mostly because I struggle to maintain a level of cleanliness fit for company. There are usually a couple dirty dishes lying around, I haven’t vacuumed in a while, throw blankets are tossed haphazardly onto the couch. I keep a very “lived in” space compared to my more put-together friends. It’s an image that is totally at odds with what people see when I’m out in public, which is this powerhouse of a woman who’s totally got her life together. But both people are me; I just have PTSD, an invisible illness that can sometimes make everyday tasks too overwhelming to handle.

PTSD, or post-traumatic stress disorder, is most commonly associated with military veterans, but anyone who has experienced or witnessed a traumatic event can develop the condition, according to Mayo Clinic. Dr. Shainna Ali, licensed mental health counselor, educator, and clinical supervisor, tells Bustle that trauma itself is subjective, meaning that something might be traumatic for one person but not traumatic for another person. For me, that traumatic experience was repeated sexual assault when I was a teenager.  more

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10 of the most important things we learned about mental health this year

Approximately one in five adults in the US — 43.8 million — experiences mental illness in a given year, according to The National Alliance on Mental Illness. That being said, it’s no surprise that each and every year researchers put time and enormous amounts of money into tackling the growing mental health crisis.

It seems in 2018, much of their hard work paid off — around the world researchers crumbled myths and opened new doors as they aimed to better comprehend the complicated world of invisible illnesses.

Here are 10 of the most important things we learned about mental health in 2018.  more

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How to tell if someone is having mental health issues

I recently noticed my colleague’s change in behaviour over the past year. For the last nine years that I have known her, she was a happy and well-adjusted person whom the other team members looked up to as ‘big sister’. People went to her for advice. But this year, she has been having bizarre and erratic behaviour swings. What is strange is that when she is unhappy, she will tell you that she is sad, but she will be wearing a happy smile. I find this very odd, especially when she has never been like this in the past.

There are many causes for a sudden or gradual change in behaviour in a person you know well.  more

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Group treatment reduces veterans’ PTSD symptom severity

Both group cognitive behavioral treatment and group present-centered treatment reduced PTSD symptom severity in veterans with PTSD, according to study findings.

“Relative to individual treatment approaches, there has been much less research conducted on PTSD group treatments,” Denise M. Sloan, PhD, professor of psychiatry at Boston University School of Medicine and behavioral science division associate director at the National Center for PTSD, and colleagues wrote. “The majority of studies investigating PTSD group treatment have used an open trial design, which provides limited information about treatment efficacy.”    more

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Laugh in the Face of Anxiety

Anxiety occasionally visits us all. When we give an important presentation, take a test, go on a first date or walk down a dark alley our minds and bodies naturally respond by going on high alert and attuning to the potential dangers and risks of these endeavors.

A healthy amount of anxiety prevents us from falling victim to those dangers and risks. Choosing not to go down that dark alley could be a life-saving response. But an excessive amount of anxiety can increase our risk of suffering negative consequences.

The millions of people who suffer from social anxiety disorder, panicdisorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and other anxiety disorders experience debilitating degrees of anxiety and fear that can significantly limit their functioning in daily life. The natural instincts designed to help protect them from the dangers they fear have become sources of danger themselves.  more

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