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Post Traumatic Stress

Discussion in 'Questions About Treatment' started by joe, Dec 1, 2014.

  1. joe

    joe Active Contributor

    Many people abuse drugs for various reasons.One of the reason that is making many go for drugs is the post traumatic stress.To numb their pains,they opt for drugs as way way of controlling the stress effects.

    Therefore I was thinking if there could be measures at first to deal with the stress,the craving for drugs could reduce.Do you think this could help reduce drug abuse abuse?

    If you think reducing post traumatic stress could help manage drug abuse,which are some of the best methods that could be used to help a person with stress?
    amethyst likes this.
  2. CpXi7z1

    CpXi7z1 Member

    Coping with stress or providing a safe and healthy outlet for it does reduce the desire for drugs, alcohol, and other harmful outlets. I've never drank alcohol, but there was a stressful period in my life where I craved alcohol. An addiction would have provided an excuse for any failures in my life. Having watched my brother's struggle with alcohol and drugs, I didn't want to make the same decisions and ruin my life. Instead, I biked, journaled, wrote stories, and read. The desire for alcohol soon disappeared, but there are situations that make me want to drink. Then I remember that I have a life to live that would be ruined by addiction.
  3. allswl

    allswl Member

    For many dealing with the stress of their lives is the first part of the process. Many abuse programs take a multidimensional approach to treatment and this will be a major component. This is mainly due to the approach resulting in longer lasting results. Often-times addiction is a psychological and as such it has to be properly addressed.
    CpXi7z1 likes this.
  4. CpXi7z1

    CpXi7z1 Member

    Because addiction often has underlying causes, treating the whole person makes more sense than putting a Band-Aid on the addiction.
  5. Sonjapunk

    Sonjapunk Member

    Be patient and understanding. Getting better takes time, even when a person is committed to treatment for PTSD. Be patient with the pace of recovery and offer a sympathetic ear. A person with PTSD may need to talk about the traumatic event over and over again. This is part of the healing process, so avoid the temptation to tell your loved one to stop rehashing the past and move on.
  6. sillylucy

    sillylucy Community Champion

    I think the first thing is to tackle the stress so that the person doesn't feel the need to use. PTSD is something that takes a long time to manage. Anxiety issues like this are very hard to deal with and I can understand why they would want to numb themselves. I suffer from panic attacks and drinking helps me feel calmer, but I know that is a slippery slope back to being an alcoholic.
  7. JessiFox

    JessiFox Active Contributor

    A dear friend of mine is the exact situation you described- at first he only relied on the drugs and drinking minimally, to help deal with his stress and the symptoms that were making hard for him to function. Unfortunately he had a very bad experience with a therapist that turned his dependence into all out addiction and really turned him off from seeking help from someone who might be better suited to his problem.

    It's a huge problem in our country- that PTSD is so underdiagnosed and undertreated...that it's so hard for our soldiers and vets to get the help they require. We need to raise awareness and raise our standards for how our service men and women are treated.
  8. DancingLady

    DancingLady Community Champion

    Turning to a substance like drugs or alcohol is a much faster and easier way to cope than calling friends, making an effort to communicate what is going on with you and seeking whatever help and support you need to get through your struggles. All too often people take the easy route because they feel overwhelmed already and don't want to put forth any more effort. I can totally understand that, but it just underscores how those of us who are in the role of friend or family member need to be there for those in our life who may be struggling so that they can find the support they need before they end up falling into an addiction.
  9. JessiFox

    JessiFox Active Contributor

    I see where you're coming from, but I think some people (particularly with depression and similar problems) actually legitimately feel like a burden, or like they can't put any more of their troubles on other people. I guess my point being that some people don't feel like they're taking the easy way out, if anything they might see it as quite the opposite. I do agree with you on the fundamental point there, though.
  10. NikkiDesrosiers

    NikkiDesrosiers Senior Contributor

    This is definitely a valid issue, many people dealing with PTSD often have anxiety and social issues that go ignored by loved ones and doctors and when these people can find support no where else they turn to drugs - the sad thing is that for a lot of people, therapy, anti-anxiety meds and a wonderful support system can mean all the difference.
  11. SamClemensMT

    SamClemensMT Member

    They say that stress is the result of your body being in one place while your mind is somewhere else. Stress is stress, so in keeping with the definition I just gave, I would say keep your mind occupied. Stay busy and perhaps this will help.
  12. notodrugs

    notodrugs Community Listener Community Listener

    We are talking about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder here, right? I've read PTSD can be self-managed by some simple tricks. One is to slow down your breathing. Sitting upright preferably, breathe in through your nose and down to the lower belly for about 4 seconds, hold a couple of seconds, then breathe out through the mouth for 4 seconds. Wait few seconds to do the next breathing.

    Another way is to relax the muscles. This is a longer procedure and takes a more quite place without anything or anyone bothering you. You should feel comfortable even in what you wear and lie down on. Anyway, it requires you to rally hardens a particular set of muscles like the foot perhaps but be cautious not to hurt yourself. Then after several seconds, let go of the tension. Let loose of the hardened muscles. The shift from tension to relaxation is worthy to take note of.

    Another is diverting your attention to something else by way of using your senses. For instance, you can describe how the wind feels on you hair, face, body, etc.

    The very cause of your fear and stress should not be avoided, instead face it head-on. Say PTSD was caused by car accident when driving, that should not stop you from driving. Get back to your normal routine, like the things you used to enjoy before the trauma. Although it is difficult, it is important to go back to your daily grind ASAP. It is also important to take care of yourself like what you eat, and the like.

    Then if you need help, don't hesitate to ask. All these tips might be difficult to manage on your own. So you may even ask a professional help to make you more successful in overcoming your fears or even possible guilt feelings after the traumatic situation.
  13. Aaron

    Aaron Member

    I'm a big believer in the physiological link between the mind and body. One thing I always suggest to my friends is to get a good physical regiment. From my perspective, not only are you making your body and mind stronger, but during that timeframe you're not focused on what is stressing you out. I feel it's a great way to keep your mind preoccupied so you're not focused on just the stressful situations.
  14. Charles P.

    Charles P. Community Advocate

    I think that everyone has some really good ideas with PTSD, but when it comes to our Service men and women, the bottom line is that our Country has just flat let them down. We lose on average 25 (non-active) Service men & women a day to suicide, because of PTSD. If you go back as far as the 60's and 70's, we lost approximately 60,000 to 70,000 members of our Military in Vietnam. Since the end of that war, we have lost approximately 150,000 to suicide after they came home. The bottom line, we need to do something quickly, and the more people that know what is going on, the better for our Service men and women. I think that the best way we can help anyone with PTSD, would be to encourage them to get help asap.
  15. Charli

    Charli Community Champion

    I ink having a pet is one of the best therapeutic methods to both prevent and cure addiction. If a person is stressed and has a lot of anxiety from post trauma, it might be best to have them be able to take care of a pet even for just a few hours a day because it not only gives relaxing benefits but also it helps with allowing you to see outside yourself and gain back some perspective.
  16. Miles Hansen

    Miles Hansen Member

    Overcoming PTSD is not easy, and overcoming it is a difficulty. There are a lot, and I do mean a lot, of people who turn to drugs to overcome mental illness, and there is both upsides and downsides to this: My mother is a caretaker at an institution, so I've seen both. There's a lot of money being spend on research in medical marijuana, and PTSD is something there's been some research on already.
    Here's a couple of quick articles I found on the subject:
    Remember that this is experimental, and that you should seek therapy if dealing with mental diseases like PTSD, and discuss treatment plans with your doctor. Stay safe people!
  17. JoshPosh

    JoshPosh Community Champion

    I have a friend that suffers from PTS. It's really bad. He flips out at anything and it intensifies when he drinks alcohol. He has been known to dabble into drugs just to take the edge off if his disorder. But yeah, there is a direct link between drug abuse and PTS. He was on prescription drugs for awhile for PTS. Now he is taking other drugs to help out.
  18. amethyst

    amethyst Community Champion

    I agree with you, Joe, treating the underlying stress in addictive behaviors is one of the key elements to improve one's life in a holistic way. Many people get addicted to substances because they don't know how to deal with the stress that they have accumulated over many years. So many things remain unprocessed.
    I still suffer from bouts of PTS even though many years have passed since I left my old life behind me. There are certain situations that trigger stress and paranoia in me, and I am immediately teleported back into my dreadful childhood. The way to deal with it, is to gradually open the doors and deal with whatever presents itself.
  19. RoseK

    RoseK Active Contributor

    I think that having a consistent support system is extremely important when dealing with either of these issues separately but mandatory when dealing with PTSD and addiction. It is not always possible to rely on family to provide this foundation of trust, so it needs to be found somewhere. I suffer from both disorders and didn't have a consistent support system when my bottom fell out. I was doing not much more beyond surviving while I kept hoping that I would be able to find stability. This discussion about duel treatment also ties into another thread on this forum that addresses whether one should "give up" on another if he is addicted. I've been on both sides of the situation. I'm not saying one should enable. Instead, one should provide consistent support to the best of one's ability. We are all connected to one another.
  20. juno

    juno Community Champion

    There is term for post traumatic stress, PTSD - Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. So, yes, you can be diagnosed and treated for it. If one undergoes some measure of trauma, they should always seek out some professional consultation before it becomes a bigger issue.