Chronic illness and PTSD.
from the National Center for PTSD:
All people with PTSD have lived through a traumatic event that caused them to fear for their lives, see horrible things, and feel helpless. Strong emotions caused by the event create changes in the brain that may result in PTSD.
Most people who go through a traumatic event have some symptoms at the beginning. Yet only some will develop PTSD. It isn’t clear why some people develop PTSD and others don’t. How likely you are to get PTSD depends on many things:
How intense the trauma was or how long it lasted
If you lost someone you were close to or were hurt
How close you were to the event
How strong your reaction was
How much you felt in control of events
How much help and support you got after the event
Many people who develop PTSD get better at some time. But about 1 out of 3 people with PTSD may continue to have some symptoms. Even if you continue to have symptoms, treatment can help you cope. Your symptoms don’t have to interfere with your everyday activities, work, and relationships.
You can develop post-traumatic stress disorder when you go through, see or learn about an event that causes intense fear, helplessness or horror.
Those of us with chronic illness are repeatedly re-traumatized by extraordinary pain, isolation, helplessness, horror, fear, and loss. Our illnesses can create a situation of constant trauma, with acute episodes (hospitalizations, flares, etc) of intense trauma. So why are we (and those who stand by us and experience trauma as caretakers and family members) almost never mentioned when PTSD is talked about? Why are we almost never on the lists of causes (war, car accidents, natural disasters, etc) for PTSD?
Where are our resources?