Stress Anxiety and PTSD

Most people associate PTSD with survivors of rape or soldiers returning from war. Other forms of PTSD are often not recognized. Any form of trauma can lead to PTSD if it is severe enough or if it occurs repetitively or if you feel threatened. 

If you have ever been exposed to parents who drink alcohol to excess, or if there has been verbal and physical abuse in your home growing up, or even if your mother had severe anxiety that could have made it hard to cope with children, you may have PTSD.
Repeated bullying at school, or dealing daily with pain, can lead to a form of complex PTSD.
I believe the repetitive stress when faced with chronic pain, unable to receive appropriate medical care, can lead to severe stress, anxiety and even complex PTSD.
Take a look at this video 

Here is another explanation of Complex PTSD. 

Below is education on stress and anxiety and complex PTSD. But if you want to skip the education, please try the daily program for a few weeks and see if your body feels better. 

Daily Stress Program

This is a more complex presentation – but you may find it useful

This picture on the link below shows a normal brain and then what a brain looks like in a state of extreme stress, as in a flashback.

Link for PTSD PTSD

Looking at the photo on the link – note the very alarmed brain – yellow and red taking over areas of the brain that should be calmly thinking and managing your brain. Normal brain on the left of the picture shows soft greens and blues change then to alarmed yellows and reds – way too alert brain to think clearly – a brain that is not shutting down – way overactive.

You will see in the scan – a smaller picture (below the two larger ones) with an area lit up – that is your Limbic area of the brain – 3 F’s – Fright  Flight or Freeze – fright.

When you have chronic pain – that area – the Limbic area – is often switched on for most or even all of the day, depending how stressed your body is with pain. Pain causes stress and stress causes pain. The alarm will not switch off.

When your brain’s alarm center is so switched on, you will feel pain that most people’s brains ignore. So when your body is uncomfortable, like maybe your posture is not great, the nerves send a message to the pain center. The pain center receives a message from your cortex that all is well – no need for alarm. The cortex simply informs your body to move without you even feeling pain.  For the lucky 70% of us.

For the unlucky 30% – the alarm system is blaring and even the slightest nerve sensations from the brain cause intense pain responses.

Unfortunately certain parts of the brain cannot tell the difference between physical and emotional stress, not even bad stress from good stress. Stress is stress.

Flight Fright Fight Response

The body responds with the flight fright fight response.  The changes that result from this stress response include increased adrenaline and norepinephrine. If these stress hormones are high for a few days, cortisol starts to rise. These hormonal changes can cause many different problems, long term even weight gain.  ADH, anti-diuretic hormone, is another hormone that can be released with stress and cause swelling of extremities, including fingers, toes, legs.


Another great explanation of what happens with stress – perceived danger:

Undertreatment of Pain causes a lot of stress. This includes undertreatment of emotional distress. 

Certain communities are prone to PTSD because of a legacy of abuse and racial intolerance. There are programs on line that can help. Awakening is a culturally sensitive on line site for stress relief.

Meditation: first talk to your mental health counselor as sometimes meditation can awaken past traumas: Awakening

Anxiety is an inflammatory disorder and causes illness, including heart attacks and strokes.

Calm the brain with correct breathing

In order to work on PTSD, you need coping tools. These tools are often not available to people who have grown up in dysfunctional families. Usually dysfunctional parents will have come from homes with their own dysfunction. 

Before you can tackle PTSD, you need coping tools – a toolbox of skills that can help you manage your problems, be it drinking, drugs, overeating. These are all abnormal tools we use to manage our emotional pain. Tools to numb our feelings. Try to find mental health counselors to help you build your toolbox. 

Mindfulness: Palouse Mindfulness Course

See some of the videos from this site: Palouse Mindfulness Videos

Another important tool to add to your coping toolbox is paying attention to how you think. What you think is what you feel.  Here is a great program, costs a bit of money, not much. Try it if you can afford it.

Poor Sleep

Website for sleep management: CBT for insomina

Sleep disorder / Insomnia

Anxiety causes inflammation which can affect your arteries, joints, muscles, connective tissues and even sinuses. 

This is a great article – sorry – can’t click on it directly – but copy and paste into your address – (Ctrl c   –  to save      and then            Ctrl v   –   to paste  Pedram Shojai

This is quite gentle Yoga – the one below that is more intense
Choose what suits you best and listen to your body – TAKE NOTICE OF HOW YOUR BODY FEELS IN POSTURES

Meditation can be helpful but do talk to your doctor as meditating can cause trauma flashbacks.

Sleep disorder / Insomnia