Taking Aim at PTSD: Part Two - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

Taking Aim at PTSD: Part Two


Researchers are trying to get the word out about a new study taking place right now that could help thousands of veterans dealing with the symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.  Research shows that as many 8 to 20 percent of soldiers coming from the disorder.

After a traumatic experience, someone who suffers from PTSD may show symptoms that include: mild to moderate stress, intrusive memories and/or dreams, sleep difficulties, irritability, depression, anger, memory problems, feelings of guilt or shame, self-destructive behavior, being easily startled, having flashbacks, and/or avoiding activities that were once enjoyable.

The stigma surrounding PTSD still keeps many veterans from seeking help according to Christi Oates, Progress study coordinator. "It's hard to go to the doctor for any kind of mental health treatment, but especially for PTSD, especially within a military environment."  A research study, funded by the Department of Defense, is currently underway at the VA clinic in Savannah that could bring some relief to those who battle PTSD.  Some of those who sign up for the study will be given Sertraline, a drug that has proven to be effective treating PTSD.  Some will be receive a type of talk therapy called Prolonged Exposure Therapy, where veterans confront the trauma memory itself with the help of counselor. Others will be given a combination of both therapies.  The goal is to find out of the combination therapy works better than the individual therapies. 

The study is free and there is no wait to get help.  If you think you might be experiencing symptoms of PTSD or if you are a family member of someone who might be, you can give Christi Oates a call at 912-920-0214, extension 2229, or e-mail Christi.Oates@va.gov.  You can also search Savannah PTSD on Facebook for more information.

Click on video to learn more about the study.

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