The month of June is observed as posttraumatic stress disorder Awareness Month (PTSD Awareness Month). PTSD is a condition that affects those who have experienced trauma in combat, accident, domestic abuse, or disasters. It can happen to anyone and at any age—men, women, and children. As a result, the person may experience trouble sleeping, have recurrent nightmares, react intensely due to trauma flashbacks, isolate oneself, and have trouble in relationships. PTSD can be a treatable, life-long condition, although some affected individuals may recover months after the traumatic incident.
The National Center of PTSD estimates that 7–8 out of every 100 people will experience PTSD during their lifetime, including about 4 of every 100 men and 10 of every 100 women. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) along with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and U.S. Department of Defence (DOD) support new research in the field of PTSD and related conditions to help develop better tools to identify those at a higher risk of developing the disorder and to come up with better treatment plans. The condition was often stigmatized after the Vietnam conflict but the misunderstanding around the disorder slowly started to change in 1980.
How to observe PTSD Awareness Month
- Organize open talks about PTSD - What is it? Its causes, symptoms, and treatment.
- Host a meet-and-greet with community leaders and local mental health providers to help create awareness in the community.
- Promote your event with the help of local media
- Share PTSD information brochures at local stores and coffee houses.
- Faith community also plays a big role in helping those recovering from PTSD.
- Post information on your social media with relevant hashtags such as #PTSDAwarenessMonth to show support.
- Write a blog about PTSD and share across all social media platforms.
- Set up an awareness booth at the library and other public gathering places or even outside a department store.
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) National Helpline: 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or TTY: 1-800-487-4889
- Veterans Crisis Info - National Center for PTSD
- Find Therapist - National Center for PTSD