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Post-traumatic stress disorder or PTSD is a mental health condition, which is usually triggered by an unfortunate event experienced or witnessed by the affected patient in the past. The symptoms of this condition are flashbacks, nightmares and extreme anxiety. The patient also thinks about the event in an uncontrolled manner.
PTSD is a serious mental health condition that can damage the affected person's personality to a great extent. Therefore, the person should be given proper treatment at the earliest. There are various treatment methods for PTSD that can help you in changing how you think about a traumatic event. The treatment options that can be used have been mentioned below:
There are different forms of counselling for treating PTSD which include:
- Cognitive therapy: It is a therapy where you learn how to change your thought patterns regarding the trauma and allow you to eliminate unnecessary fears.
- Exposure therapy: It involves talking about the trauma over and over again until the fear departs.
- Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing: It is a process where you are made to focus on several forms of distractions like sounds and hand movements while you think about the trauma. A good therapist is very important to bring positive changes in your life by means of counseling therapy. You require a therapist who will listen to whatever you have to say and guide you through everything to make you feel better.
SSRI or Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor is a form of antidepressant medicine, which helps you with your sadness and tension. There are certain medicines that are really effective and can be prescribed by your doctor depending on the condition.
Other forms of treatment:
There are several other types of medicines and procedures that can be used for treating PTSD. They include the following:
- There are other counselling forms, which include group therapy, brief psychodynamic psychotherapy and family therapy.
- There are other medicines as well for the treatment of PTSD. They include tricyclic antidepressants and atypical antidepressants.
- Monoamine oxidase inhibitors like isocarboxazid can also be used for curing PTSD.
- Certain mood stabilizers can be taken along with the medicines such as carbamazepine and lithium.
- Several antipsychotics, which include risperidone can be used to tackle symptoms such as flashbacks and sleeplessness.
- Another medicine known as prazosin is also used for dealing with nightmares and sleep disorders caused by PTSD. All kinds of medicines for the treatment of PTSD should be taken only after being prescribed by a doctor.
Post-traumatic stress disorder is a serious mental health condition in which a patient suffers from continuous negative thoughts regarding a traumatic event which has happened in the past. This condition may give rise to other health problems, and immediate treatment is recommended.
Insomnia is a disorder where a person has difficulty sleeping. One can have problem falling asleep or staying asleep for long. Some people also have disturbed sleep. This can be a major problem as due to lack of sleep one feels tired and fatigued all day.
Recurring cases of insomnia hamper your daily activities and interfere with the smooth functioning of your life. Therefore, this condition should not be ignored and treated immediately.
Here are the various ways to treat insomnia:
Non-Medical (Cognitive and Behavioral treatment)
Several psychological and behavioral techniques can be used for the treatment of insomnia. Many of these methods can be easily self-taught and others require a therapist to be carried out properly.
- Relaxation training, which is also called progressive muscle relaxation involves the patient to tense and relax his muscles systematically in various parts or regions of the body. Relaxation techniques, such as breathing exercises, various forms of meditation, mindfulness and guided imagery are used for treating insomnia people. The use of audio recordings for guidance in these techniques is quite popular.
- Stimulus control enables building an association between the bedroom and sleep. This is done by limiting several kinds of activities done in a bedroom. This may include going to bed only when very sleepy and leaving bed if you cannot sleep within twenty minutes. A strict bedtime and wake up time schedule has to be maintained.
- Cognitive behavioral therapy or CBT involves changes in behavior like maintaining a strict sleep time schedule, elimination of afternoon naps and other habits related to sleep. A cognitive component is also added to this method. Unhealthy beliefs and fear regarding sleep are challenged and positive, rational thinking is encouraged. CBT is a very effective procedure for treating insomnia and the track record regarding success is high.
- Changes in lifestyle are required to treat insomnia and prevent recurrence of insomnia, you should change certain habits and start some new practices. You should limit your intake of caffeine, alcohol and nicotine. Do not consume coffee or tea before going to sleep and avoid smoking. The habits may be stimulating and will keep you awake. Your diet should be balanced. You should avoid having rich and spicy food before going to bed. Avoid late meals and maintain a proper schedule for meals. Regular exercise can improve the symptoms of insomnia and you should try to work out every day.
Medical Treatment: There are many forms of medicines, which can treat insomnia. This includes over-the-counter medicines, as well as prescribed medicines. The type of medicine required completely depends on the severity and symptoms of your insomnia and other factors related to health. Therefore, you must consult a doctor before having any kind of medicine for treating insomnia.
The most common medicines for insomnia, which are usually prescribed by doctors are benzodiazepine hypnotics, non-benzodiazepine hypnotics and melatonin receptor agonists. However, medicines should only be taken after consulting with a specialist. Insomnia not only affects your health but also interferes with all your daily activities. Proper treatment should be taken to treat the same. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a psychiatrist.
As per medical studies, bipolar disorder is a personality disorder that is said to affect millions of people around the world, as per medical studies. Extreme mood swings that take a person from a state of euphoria to depression can be called bipolar disorder. While we all go through phases of the same, the patients who suffer from this disorder will usually show a persistent swing or shift between varying moods. The severe shifts will lead to difficulties when it comes to managing one's everyday affairs in a normal manner. The symptoms and signs are also characterised by the phases and mood swings that the patient may be going through.
Read on to know more about the signs and symptoms of bipolar disorder:
- Mania: One of the extremes in mood swings experienced by the patient includes extreme euphoria or mania for no apparent, or life altering reason. Feeling overly happy and enthusiastic are the basic symptoms of this phase.
- Impulsive: The patient can end up feeling elated for a prolonged period of time, with extreme restlessness and impulsive behaviour. They may also end up getting agitated and edgy. This is usually characterised by fidgety behaviour and when the patient speaks too fast. The patient may speak too fast due to racing thoughts which overtake his or her speech and actions.
- Confidence: In this stage, the patient may also display extraordinary confidence, which may not necessarily be backed by reality. In reality, things may be very different in terms of opportunities, skills, people and other such factors. During this mania phase, the patient may also indulge in risky behaviour that gives an adrenaline rush like gambling and having sexual intercourse with multiple partners. This usually happens when the patient is bolstered by a sudden surge of unfounded confidence.
- Depression: This is the other end of the spectrum for these patients. When the mania abates, it gives to way to extreme depression and even anxiety.
- Withdrawal: The patient usually tends to isolate himself or herself from the rest of the family and social circle for a prolonged period, refusing to meet anyone on a normal basis. They also avoid contact with people whom they meet every day, which can have an adverse effect on their work and the rest of the aspects of their lives.
- Memory and Concentration: In this phase, the patient can also experience difficulty in remembering important things and concentrating on tasks. The patient may also be preoccupied with a number of things which can prevent him or her from making proper decisions. Slow speech and lack of energy may follow as a result of such preoccupation. Preoccupation with death is a common symptom of this phase. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a doctor and ask a free question.
The most commonly encountered two facts about the drug or alcohol use by our addicted kids are drugs/ alcohol are something which they really like those are something which they find really hard to give up. They know that the drug can kill them in a long run, but still they go with the immediate rewards by consuming the drug. The whole addiction thing is about being in the moment and choosing what your brain craves for right now at the expense of other rewards and possibilities. So what we observe is that drug hijacks a person's rational thinking for the long term consequences.
Addiction has to do with changes in the brain that come about gradually, become more and more central, more and more powerful as the time passes by. The drug use becomes the axis of the person, around which the other activities in life takes turn. It takes on the central meaning and role in the person's life in such a way that the most irrational idea about taking the drug or alcohol may seem to the person the most rational in that particular situation, as the drug compromises the person's clear thinking. So yes an addict can make choices for his drug cravings but the way they make choices is the thing we must think about. In an addict the brain does what it needs to do, but in a very non-adaptive way. In simple words addiction hijacks the very parts of the brain that are supposed to fix it.
Craving is the fundamental psychological experience of an addict because of which addiction occurs. Dopamine serves as the fuel for craving and is the common pathway for all kinds of addictions. Natural goodies like the food and sex certainly release dopamine in brain and follow the progression from liking to wanting i. E. Wanting more of those. As per studies, among the natural rewards sex can provide a person with the maximum natural high of upto 200% dopamine levels in brain. But the drugs cause a higher than 200% dopamine levels, which thus is the magic mark for addictive processes to occur. Also with repeated drug use there are changes in the arrangement of the inner landscape of synaptic architecture in brain, such that the thoughts, the images, the memories about the drug use behavior takes over many parts of the cortex of brain and thus the person see the drug cues wherever he gets a dopamine rush, be it with sex or food or social gatherings. Thus dopamine drives the person with a feeling of craving for the drug. Also with repeated dopamine increments of higher than natural amounts, there is maladaptive learning in brain in form of the shrinkage of dopamine cells, decrease in dopamine receptors and depletion of the dopamine stores. Thus the real natural goodies like sex or food are than not able to give a dopamine high and the only way left is to have more drugs. The person becomes impulsive and compulsive in his drug taking behavior. Repetition compulsion feedback loop keeps the person going after the drug use, narrowing the sense of meaningful world for the person. This causes a vicious cycle of incremental drug intake and thus addiction. Dopamine pathways are subdued by chronic drug use and thus the drug addicts are never able to keep up with their promises of staying away from the drug.
But then our brains have enormous reparative capacity and so a lot of the things that drugs do to damage the brain are probably reversible. One of the things that last the longest are the memories associated with drug use and the learning/ operant conditioning that occurs with it. The acute memory of brain over stimulation with drug is captured in amygdale which designates an important part of the instinctual brain i. E. The brain part which can't be controlled. So if a drug related cue is presented to a recovering addict, all that they can remember is the greatest high which they ever had with the drug. Thus the person remains preoccupied and thinks about the drug even when not using it. When this occurs, it is for the lifetime and we can't undo it. Their amygdale are going to light up seeing the drug cues for rest of their lives. This is why we say recovery from drug is a lifelong experience. Studies show a much faster depletion of our brain neurotransmitters by drug use (less than 12 months), than their replenishment in recovery from addiction (5 to 7 years). Thus during recovery an ongoing treatment for the imbalanced brain neurotransmitters and the visible symptoms due to the same is always essential.
Asperger's Syndrome or Asperger's Disorder is a neurotypical condition that affects the development of the child the effects of which continue into adulthood. This condition typically shows up as difficulties faced by the patient when it comes to social interactions as well as other nonverbal means of communication. It should not be confused with autism as the patient has no speech and cognitive development delay.
Asperger's syndrome can show up as restricted and repetitive patterns in the behaviour of the patient. It lies at the higher end of the autism spectrum and the signs are usually less obvious.
Here are a few ways with which you can effectively deal with someone who is suffering from this disorder:
- Routine: The patient suffering from this condition will need a certain kind of stability as it is very difficult to predict what will happen in the near future or to even plan for it. The best way to tackle this scenario is with the help of a proper routine that can help the patient achieve some kind of control over the situation surrounding him or her so that he or she is better equipped and more capable of handling normal functioning and social situations as well.
- Information: It is also a good idea to help these patients in looking at and in processing information. While normal people may easily be able to discard insignificant or unimportant information, the brain of the patient suffering from asperger's syndrome does not allow him or her to do so. In many cases, the patient is not able to filter the important and the unimportant information. This can debilitate many functions. So, it is important to be present to help the patient in making decisions and processing information that is actually relevant to his or her functioning.
- Learning: One of the most crucial things to remember with the Asperger's patient is that they tend to understand and process things when they have a visual presentation rather than being told verbally. So showing them things practically in the proper manner is the right way to help them learn and process situations in a correct way. This will prevent them from doing things in the same old way even when their brains tell them that it will lead to wrong results.
- Physical Abilities: Poor motor skills as well as lack of proper organisation skills are traits that usually characterise these patients. It is important to make them aware of this during games and activities that require management as well as use of social skills. For example, football and other such activities can be introduced in the routine. This will promote interaction with the team in order to play and enjoy the game.
Epilepsy is a form of chronic disorder and it is characterized by recurrent seizures. The episodes of epileptic seizures may differ from person to person. These seizures could be a result of genetic disorder or a result of trauma or stroke. During a seizure, a patient may also experience symptoms of neurological disorders and sometimes lose consciousness.
Medical help for epilepsy
Epilepsy itself cannot be cured using medication, but proper medicines help in eliminating recurrent seizures. These medicines stabilize the electrical activity within the brain preventing seizures.
How effective is the medication for epilepsy?
The success of controlling seizures using medicines depends on the type and severity of the epilepsy. Medicines for epilepsy are usually very effective and may fully keep seizures under control. However, controlling seizures caused due to brain problems may be more difficult. Usually, epilepsy medicines can control seizures for a long period of time when they are taken regularly.
When is medical help needed?
The decision about when to start medicines for epilepsy is a tricky one. This is because a first seizure cannot confirm whether a person has an on-going epilepsy problem. A second seizure may occur after many years or may not happen at all. Prediction of seizures is also quite difficult.
The severity of seizures also indicates when to start medicines for treatment. In case a first seizure is quite severe, medication should be started at once. Some people have very mild seizures even though they may be recurring in nature, and medication can be avoided in this situation.
All the pros and cons must be thought over before starting medications for the treatment of epilepsy. It is advisable to wait for a second seizure and then start medications for treatment. In most cases, medication is started after a second seizure occurs, twelve months within the first seizure. You should always consult a doctor to know when you need to start taking medicines to treat the condition.
For making the most out of the medicines to control seizures, you should follow certain steps:
- You must take medications exactly as your doctor has prescribed.
- Before switching to generic versions of your medicines or before taking other prescribed medicines, you must consult your doctor.
- You should never stop taking the medicines.
- In case you experience enhanced depression, mood swings and suicidal thoughts, you should talk to your doctor immediately.
- In case you have migraine, you should let your doctor know so that he can prescribe you anti-epileptic medicines, which also prevent migraines.
Medicines cannot treat the underlying cause of epilepsy, but these help in controlling seizures and this is the most common symptom of epilepsy. Medication should be started at a proper time and must be continued without stopping.
In order to determine whether a person is having a drug problem, there are several signs, which can be interpreted to know about the exact drug abuse state of a person. Drug abuse requires immediate attention before it becomes more problematic. There are several patterns and stages of drug use that have been listed below:
- Hard drug use: Heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine fall under the category of hard drugs and are the most dangerous drugs. There are severe effects on the health and behavior of a user of hard drugs. Some people use these kinds of drugs for recreational purposes, but some can get addicted just after using them once. Such people usually isolate themselves from society and possess a high-risk behavior.
- Frequent drug use: Frequency alone cannot determine whether a person is addicted to a certain drug. Some people may take drugs only once and twice a week, but still suffer from acute addiction. Frequency of drug use may indicate tolerance and a person may require more with each day. Frequent drug users usually keep on continuing the habit and it is hard for them to quit.
- Early drug use: Some people start taking drugs at an early age during adolescence, and they are likely to develop severe drug problems later in life. People who take drugs before the age of fifteen turn out to be addicts as they grow up. The earlier a person uses drugs, the earlier he becomes addicted. Early drug use is a common phenomenon in today's world.
- Solitary drug use: Using drugs and addictive substances while a person is alone may result in fatal addiction and various problems in life. Teenagers using alcohol, marijuana and cigarettes are prone to serious drug problems during adulthood. Solitary drug users are usually poor in studies and have a violent or abusive behavior.
- Escapist drug use: Many people use drugs for dealing with stress, several problems in life or for building self esteem. These are used as a substitute for escapism, which allows a person to escape from reality to a place where nothing bothers them and they can be at peace. Such people are likely to develop drug problems. Some people may experiment with drugs just for the sake of trying, but slowly they may like it and get addicted. This causes several problems in life, and a drug problem arises. Such drug problems may affect the health in many severe ways.
Drugs are used in several patterns. All people do not use drugs in the same pattern and frequency. The pattern of drug use by a person lets the doctor determine the level of drug abuse he is on, or if he is addicted.
There is a wide range of remedies that are available to treat depression in young adults. While there is no proven way of treating depression, broadly there are three approaches that is psychological, medical and natural. The key is to know the cause of depression. Once the cause is known, a qualified professional decides the course of treatment.
Psychological Treatment: Psychological treatments revolve around talking with the patient and change the way he thinks. It equips an individual to cope up with stress, depression and conflicts.
The three most popular treatment approaches are CBT, IPT and MBCT:
- Cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) is an approach where the behavioral pattern of the patient is analyzed and a certain change in behavior is suggested to deal with depression. CBT is a problem-solving approach where a psychologist first analyzes the problem and helps a patient to see the problem from a more positive aspect.
- Interpersonal therapy (IPT) deals with problems related to personal relationships. It analyses the relationship pattern of a patient and specifically addresses them to drive away depression.
- Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) is a group activity and encourages a patient to express their feelings. The idea is to share as much as a patient can. It helps the mind to focus on the present rather than wondering it to something irrelevant that causes depression.
Medical treatment: Medical treatment deals with depression with the help of antidepressants. Medication depends on the level of depression. For more serious depression, such as psychosis and bipolar disorder, a doctor often prescribes psychotic drugs along with antidepressants and mood stabilizers. Medical treatment is suggested only when psychological treatment fails. A patient might have to get admitted in a good facility for a short time or full period of the treatment.
The natural treatment: It is related to lifestyle changes and helps a patient overcome depression. It can be followed along with other forms of treatment. Some good practices are as follows:
- A good diet: A healthy diet often helps to fight depression. Serotonin rich food such as coconut oil, fish oil, eggs, cherries, Omega-3 acid greatly helps in fighting depression.
- Stay away from Caffeine: Any caffeine related products such as coffee, cigarettes or liquor should be avoided during the depression.
- Meditation: Meditation greatly helps in overcoming depression. It offers the much-needed piece of mind and helps to concentrate more.
- Daily exercise: It has been observed that regular physical activities such as walking, running and free hand exercise can be of great help in overcoming depression. It uplifts mood and reduces stress.
- Pumpkin seeds: Pumpkin seeds contain important elements such as magnesium, healthy fat, amino acid and L-tryptophan. Pumpkin seeds help to secrete serotonin and serotonin, in turn, help in fighting depression.
Gender Identity Disorder or Gender Dysphoria causes the patient to think that he or she is does not belong to the gender that may be physically apparent. This condition may cause severe stress, anxiety and depression.
Let us find out more about the depressive conditions caused due to this disorder and how this depression may be treated:
- Trapped: One of the most common emotions that a patient experiences while suffering from this condition includes feeling trapped in the wrong body. For example, while all the physical and visual signs may point at the male status of the patient, he may actually feel that he is a female. In such cases, the patient often feels like the body does not reflect his or her true gender. This can cause the patient to feel trapped, which in turn can lead to feelings like restlessness.
- Anxiety: Once the restlessness sets in, general dissatisfaction grows, which is the earliest sign of anxiety. The intense discomfort experienced by the patient can lead to severe anxiety where he or she shuns normal functioning and socialising. The patient may choose to stay alone and isolated in the long run, which can fuel further anxiety when the patient is faced with social situations like school, work and others.
- Mismatch: The depression and anxiety also comes from a sense of mismatch that the patient may feel when it comes to the gender in the mind and the physical gender that may be parlayed with the genitals as well as other areas of the body and development. This mismatch will need to be addressed in order to get to the root of the depression and anxiety experienced by the patient.
- Talk Therapy: Talk therapy is one of the most common and popular forms of therapy that has been used for this kind of disorder. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy or CBT is one of the most effective forms of therapy used for conditions like depressions due to GID or any other kind of depression and anxiety. With this kind of therapy, the patient can be brought face to face with the problem before reprogramming the attitude, thinking and resulting behaviour of the patient to be more accepting of the condition. Also, any physical therapy will have to backed by it.
- Trans Sexuality and Homosexuality: With the help of therapy, one of the most important and initial barriers that will have to brought down is the opinion of the patient. The patient will have to be made aware of the fact that his or her problem does not convert his or her into a transsexual or homosexual. This condition is not the same a sexual orientation issue.