If you have gone through a traumatic experience and have trouble getting back to feeling normal and reconnecting to others, you may be suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder.

Listed below are symptoms that may appear out of the blue:

  • Intrusive, upsetting memories of the event
  • Flashbacks (acting/feeling like the event is happening again
  • Nightmares (either of the event or of other frightening things)
  • Feelings of intense distress when reminded of the trauma
  • Intense physical reactions to reminders of the event (heart pounding, rapid breathing, nausea, muscle tension, sweating)


  • Avoiding activities, places, thoughts/feelings that remind you of the trauma
  • Inability to remember important aspects of the trauma
  • Loss of interest in activiates and life in general
  • Feeling detached from others and emotionally numb
  • Sense of limited future


  • Difficulty falling/staying asleep
  • Irritability or outbursts of anger
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Hypervigilance
  • Feeling  jumpy and easily startled


  • Guilt, shame, self-blame
  • Substance abuse
  • Depression and hopelessness
  • Suicidal thoughts and feelings
  • Feeling alienated and alone
  • Feelings of mistrust and betrayal
  • Headaches, stomach problems, chest pain

It is important to seek help and much easier with therapy and support.  You can recover from posttraumatic stress disorder.  If you try to avoid or numb yourself it will only get worse.  You can’t escape your emotions-they emerge when you are under stress or let down your guard.  You can heal your relationships  and regain your ability to function and improve your general quality of life.

Panic attacks are sudden feelings of terror that strike without warning.  These episodes can occur at any time, even during sleep.  A panic attack may feel like a heart attack or that death is imminent.  The panic attack is not in proportion to the real situation and may be unrelated to what is happening around them.  If you are experiencing several of the syptoms listed below, it may be time to seek professional help.                                                                                  

Symptoms of Panic Attacks:

  • Racing heart
  • Feeling weak, faint or dizzy
  • Feeling sweaty or having chills
  • Tingling or numbness in the hands and fingers
  • Sense of terror of impending doom or death
  • Feeling a loss of control
  • Chest pains
  • Breathing difficulties

Anxiety (known as Generalized Anxiety Disorder) is characterized by excessive, exaggerated anxiety and worry about everyday life events with no obvious reason.  Daily life becomes a constant state of worry, fear and dread.  Eventually, the anxiety dominates thinking and interferes with daily functioning and relationships.  It may be time to seek professional help if you are experiencing the symptoms of anixiety listed below.                                                                                             

Symptoms of Anxiety:

  • Excessive, ongoing worry and tension
  • An unrealistic view of problems
  • Restlessness or a feeling of being “edgy”
  • Irritability
  • Muscle tension
  • Headaches
  • Sweating
  • Difficulty concentration
  • Nausea
  • The need to go to the bathroom frequently
  • Tiredness
  • Trouble falling and/or staying asleep
  • Trembling
  • Being easily startled

Depression can be successfully treated through the use of a variety of counseling tools. In some cases, medication is also very helpful.   If you are experiencing the symptoms listed below, it is probably time to seek help.                                                                                        

Symptoms of Depression:

  • Constant sadness
  • Changes in appetite or weight, sleep
  • Low energy or fatigue
  • Hopelessness
  • Feelings of worthlessness or guilt for no reason
  • Difficulty thinking, concentrating, or making decisions
  • Recurrent thoughts, plans or attempts of death or suicidal ideation
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in activities, hobbies or sex
  • Social withdrawal from family, friends
  • Irritability

Call a health care professional right away if you or a family member has any of the following sysmtoms:

  • Thoughts about suicide or dying
  • Attempts to commit suicide
  • New or worse depression
  • Feeling very agitated or restless
  • Trouble sleeping
  • New or worse irritability
  • Acting aggresive, violent or angry
  • Acting on dangerous impulses
  • An extreme increase in activity or talking



Donna Jantz, LPC

7600 East Arapahoe Road
Suite 302
Centennial, CO 80112

Phone: 720-351-0052

Email: donnajantz@q.com