Home Helpers of Amsterdam offer advice and help to victims of PTSD

HAGAMAN — Home Helpers of Amsterdam offers advice and help for victims of post-traumatic stress disorder since June is PTSD Awareness Month.

So this month is an opportune time to understand the signs and symptoms, dispel common myths and stigma associated with PTSD, and learn what support and assistance is available, according to a news release from Home Helpers.

While combat veterans are often the first people we think of in association with PTSD, anyone who has been through a serious traumatic event can develop post-traumatic stress disorder. PTSD can develop after a single, highly stressful, frightening or distressing event, or after a prolonged traumatic experience. About one in three people who experience severe trauma develop PTSD, and it is not fully understood why some develop the condition while others do not.

Everyone faces daily stressors, such as looming deadlines at work, the car breaking down, paying bills, etc. Many have also faced more serious or consequential life events, including marriage/divorce, buying a new home, and even losing a job. While these events can affect people differently, they are not a root cause of PTSD. A serious traumatic event is the one trait all PTSD sufferers have in common.

Besides war zone exposure, triggering events can include physical or sexual assault; abuse, including childhood or domestic abuse; serious accidents; natural or man-made disasters, such as a terrorist attack; and severe illnesses or other medical problems.

Symptoms of those afflicted with PTSD can include nightmares, trouble focusing on tasks, insomnia, guilt, isolation, and a tendency to avoid things that remind them of the traumatic event, which can include smells, sounds and other triggers.

These symptoms can lead those with PTSD to feel misunderstood, and even afraid to tell others what’s happening, in part because they don’t want to be treated differently. They don’t want sympathy, but they do need treatment and support to help them overcome their symptoms. Telling someone with PTSD to “get over it” doesn’t help; offering to connect them to some of the many available resources does.

For veterans, the resources available to learn more about PTSD are numerous, including Disabled American Veterans, PsychArmor Institute, the federal Department of Veterans Affairs National Center for PTSD, and the Wounded Warrior Project. Non-veterans can learn more at Faces of PTSD and the PTSD Alliance online. These sites describe the symptoms and, most importantly, can show those with PTSD and their families how and where to find support.

“We understand what it takes to support those who need help after a serious traumatic event. We focus on finding the best match between caregiver and client, and then providing the care that’s suitable for the individual recovering from PTSD,” said Home Helpers owner Ramon Rodriguez.

“We can also be of help to family caregivers, should they need a break. We can provide transportation services to medical appointments, run errands, or just be there so the caregiver can enjoy a day out.”

People often think of home care services and support for the physically disabled, or for senior citizens. But in life, mental trauma that is difficult to overcome can result from a variety of situations or occasions. “With a little help from a certified health aide, along with proper medical care, an individual with PTSD can cope, heal and recover,” said Ramon.

“They can once again function and live as healthy, productive members in society.”

“Asking for help is the bravest step anyone with PTSD can take,” Rodriguez said. “Our services accommodate individuals with PTSD and provide peace of mind for their families.”

For more information on Home Helpers and Direct Link of Amsterdam, call Ramon Rodriguez at (518) 842-5626, or visit www.HomeHelpersHomeCare.com/amsterdam and schedule a free consultation. Anyone can also visit Home Helpers at 58 N. Pawling St., Hagaman.

By Josh Bovee

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