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Aurora: The Research Journal of Ohio Northern University

Abstract

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental disorder that affects approximately thirteen million Americans and even more people around the world. PTSD is defined as “a psychological condition caused by exposure to traumatic events that are outside the normal range of human experience” (National Veterans Association). This disorder can affect a wide variety of people ranging from age, size, ethnicity and culture – both civilians and soldiers. Even with the research that has been done on post-traumatic stress disorder, there is still a large array of unanswered questions. For example, is there a link between the causes of PTSD and the circumstances in which a person gets it? What are the true effects of post-traumatic stress on soldiers? What about citizens? And is there a link between post-traumatic stress and soldiers who undergo trauma and stress everyday while they are overseas? These questions will be researched and answered throughout this essay, specifically focusing on the comparison between soldiers and civilians, the family of the PTSD sufferers, the effects of PTSD on children, and the treatment options for the disease, or lack thereof. One aspect that is consistently underrepresented throughout the research projects explored in this paper is the negative stigma of PTSD and how it prevents victims from seeking treatment. As a society, there must be more awareness and facts concerning PTSD and what triggers the disease as well as a way to abolish the abysmal care for cases of PTSD and eliminate the stigma of receiving treatment in order to help those who are suffering from mental illnesses.

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