Do I have PTSD?

Post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms may start within three months of a traumatic event, but sometimes symptoms may not appear until years after the event. These symptoms cause significant problems in social or work situations and in relationships.

PTSD symptoms vary from Veteran to Veteran and are generally grouped into four types: intrusive memories, avoidance, negative changes in thinking and mood, or changes in emotional reactions. (2)

  • Recurrent, intrusive reminders of the traumatic event, including distressing thoughts, nightmares, and flashbacks where you feel like it’s happening again. Experiencing extreme emotional and physical reactions to reminders of the trauma (panic attacks, uncontrollable shaking, heart palpitations, etc.).

  • Extreme avoidance of things that remind you of the traumatic event, including people, places, people, thoughts, or situations you associate with the bad memories. Withdrawing from friends and family and losing interest in everyday activities.

  • Negative changes in thoughts and mood, such as exaggerated negative beliefs about yourself or the world and persistent feelings of fear, guilt, or shame. Diminished ability to experience positive emotions and feeling detached from others.

  • Being on guard all the time, jumpy, and emotionally reactive, as indicated by irritability, angry outbursts, reckless behavior, difficulty sleeping, trouble concentrating, hypervigilance, and an exaggerated start response. (3)

Intensity of symptoms

   PTSD symptoms can vary in intensity over time. You may have more  
   PTSD symptoms when you're stressed in general, or when you run into
   reminders of what you went through. For example, you may hear a car  
   backfire and relive combat experiences or you may see a report on the
   news about a sexual assault and feel overcome by memories of your
   own assault.

In Crisis?
Call 1-800-273-TALK


(1), via National Institutes of Health, Department of Veteran Affairs, and Sidran Institute

(2)  Mayo Clinic,  Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, web,

(3), What are the symptoms of PTSD in Veterans?, web,





The VSG PTSD Support Group meets weekly to assist Veterans.

Meetings will start on a
on Thursday's  from 6:30pm to 8:00pm and
will be held at
255 Racetrack Road in McDonough.


​​​​​​"Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder that can occur following the experience or witnessing of a traumatic event. A traumatic event is a life-threatening event such as military combat, natural disasters, terrorist incidents, serious accidents, or physical or sexual assault in adult or childhood."(1)

PTSD affects about 7.7 million American adults in a given year, though the disorder can develop at any age including childhood. According to the VA, experts estimate that up to 20% of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom veterans,up to 10% of Gulf War veterans, and up to 30% of Vietnam War veterans have experienced PTSD. (1)