The symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder usually appear soon after the trauma. For most people, these symptoms go away on their own in the first few weeks and months after the trauma. For some, symptoms can last for many years, especially if left untreated. The symptoms of PTSD can remain at a fairly constant level of severity.
The course of the disease will vary from person to person and from event to event. Some people can recover from PTSD within six months, while others have PTSD symptoms that last much longer. While most, but not all, traumatized people experience short-term symptoms, most don't develop ongoing (chronic) post-traumatic stress disorder. Not everyone with post-traumatic stress disorder has experienced a dangerous event.
Some experiences, such as the sudden and unexpected death of a loved one, can also cause post-traumatic stress disorder. Symptoms usually start early, within 3 months after the traumatic incident, but sometimes they begin years later. Symptoms must last longer than a month and be severe enough to interfere with relationships or work to be considered PTSD. The course of the disease varies.
Some people recover within 6 months, while others have symptoms that last much longer. In some people, the condition becomes chronic. PTSD can last anywhere from several months to a year or more. The duration of PTSD in a person depends on both the trauma and the person.
Time, treatment, and support usually help a person overcome PTSD. It's very likely that PTSD won't last forever. Many people who are exposed to a traumatic event experience symptoms similar to those described above in the days after the event. However, for a person to be diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder, the symptoms must last longer than a month and cause significant distress or problems with the person's daily functioning.
Many people have symptoms within three months of the trauma, but symptoms may appear later and often persist for months and sometimes years. PTSD often occurs with other related conditions, such as depression, substance use, memory problems, and other physical and mental health problems. This stage can last for months or years, and some people move back and forth. Experiencing other difficult events that could be similar or different from the initial trauma can be a trigger.
In addition, new stressful life events, such as changes at work, the breakup of a relationship, or the fact of having a baby, can cause feelings of distress. Exposure includes directly experiencing an event, witnessing a traumatic event that happens to other people, or learning that a traumatic event occurred to a family member or close friend. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a psychiatric disorder that can occur in people who have experienced or witnessed a traumatic event, a series of events, or a set of circumstances. Acute stress disorder occurs as a reaction to a traumatic event, just like PTSD, and the symptoms are similar.