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"What are the signs of PTSD?"
My husband came back from Iraq a different man. He might be depressed. He ma have PTSD. How can I know for sure?
Unfortunately, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression are both very common in our veterans that come back from combat oversees. The two of them often go hand in hand and thus, it is difficult sometimes to say that a former solider has one or the other. The symptoms of PTSD have more to do with anxiety than pure depression. Symptoms include trouble sleeping, being hyper-aware, having flashbacks, and anger. By definition, these symptoms must last more than one month and they must cause significant disruption in the individuals life for them to be considered to be PTSD. Depression has a different set of diagnostic criteria, but like I said above, these are often found in patients with PTSD. The symptoms of depression could be sleep disturbances (either sleeping too much or too little), eating disturbances (eating too much or too little), feelings of guilt, and inability to enjoy things that should be pleasurable. I suggest that you schedule an appointment for your husband with a psychiatrist. Psychiatrists are qualified to exam a patient's set of psychological symptoms and make a formal diagnosis. From there your husband can begin treatment. This should include both a medication and a form of group therapy specifically tailored to returning vets. I hope he gets better.
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