PTSD Specialist

Human Touch Behavioral Health

Board Certified Psychiatrists located in Sacramento, CA & Elk Grove, CA

Following a traumatic event, such as an assault, an accident, or a natural disaster, you may find yourself constantly returning to the experience and struggling to cope. If you’re preoccupied with a traumatic event months or years later to the point where it affects your everyday functioning, you may have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). At Human Touch Behavioral Health in Sacramento, California, board-certified psychiatrist Dr. Archana Trivedi treats PTSD with therapy and medication so you can heal and move forward. To schedule an appointment, call Human Touch Behavioral Health today.

PTSD Q & A

What is post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)?

PTSD is a mental health condition that results from exposure to a traumatic or life-threatening event. Examples of traumatic events include natural disasters, assault, sexual violence, auto accidents, and combat.

You may develop PTSD after directly experiencing a traumatic event, witnessing a traumatic event affecting someone else, or learning that someone you know experienced a traumatic event. The condition is more common among people who:

  • Regularly witness traumatic events in their line of work
  • Have prolonged, intense trauma
  • Experienced trauma early in life

You’re also at a higher risk of developing PTSD if you have additional mental health conditions, including anxiety, depression, or substance use disorders.

What are the symptoms of PTSD?

PTSD often starts within three months of a traumatic event but may not emerge until years later. Symptoms of PTSD fall into the following categories:

Intrusive thoughts

PTSD can cause recurring flashbacks and upsetting dreams that are often so vivid you feel as if you’re reliving the event.

Avoidance

You may avoid places, activities, and people who remind you of the traumatic event and refuse to think or talk about the experience.

Negative thought patterns and moods

PTSD can harm your self-esteem and sense of worth and cause you to lose interest in relationships and activities. You may feel numb, angry, hopeless, or fearful and find your worldview is generally more negative than it was before.

Changes in physical and emotional reactions

You may be easily startled, become irritable, or have frequent outbursts. Getting a good night’s sleep and concentrating on tasks may become difficult. You may also behave recklessly or self-destructively.

Immediately following a traumatic event, it’s common to feel preoccupied, anxious, depressed, or angry. That doesn’t necessarily mean you have PTSD. If the above symptoms last for months and interfere with your everyday life, schedule an appointment with Dr. Trivedi.

How is PTSD treated?

Dr. Trivedi treats PTSD through psychotherapy and, as needed, medication. Psychotherapy approaches specific to PTSD include:

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy, in which you identify and modify harmful thought patterns, including negative thoughts about yourself and feelings of guilt or shame
  • Prolonged exposure therapy, which allows you to engage with memories and reminders of the traumatic event in a safe, controlled way, so you can gain control over your fear and learn healthy coping strategies

Dr. Trivedi may also prescribe antidepressants or anti-anxiety medication to help with your symptoms, which also helps you benefit more from therapy.

A common response to trauma is self-medication with alcohol or recreational drugs. As an experienced addiction psychiatrist, Dr. Trivedi guides you through more healthful alternatives to numbing your feelings.

To get help for PTSD, call Human Touch Behavioral Health today.