PTSD – Common Symptoms & Holistic Treatment Options

Post traumatic stress disorder affects mental health, causing symptoms such as anxiety, flashbacks, nightmares, and uncontrollable thoughts about a traumatizing event.

Many people who have experienced a traumatic event often can have temporary difficulty coping and adjusting, but are able to recover with the time and self-care.  If symptoms worsen, lasting months or even years, and interfere with daily activities – this may be an indication of PTSD.

Syptoms of PTSD are grouped into types including avoidance, intrusive memories, changes in emotional reactions, and negative changes in thinking or mood. Let’s consider each of these:


  •  avoiding thinking or talking about the event
  •  avoiding people, places, and activities reminding you of the traumatic event

Intrusive Memories 

  •  flashbacks – reliving event as if it were happening all over again
  •  dream/nightmares about the event
  •  recurring memories of the traumatic event – even when trying to not think about the event
  •  experiencing severe emotional distress, or physical reactions to things reminding you of the rtaumatic event

Changes in Emotional Reactions 

  •  overwhelming guilt/shame
  •  jumpiness – easily frightened or startled
  •  sleep disturbances
  •  difficulty concentrating
  •  defensive – on guard for danger
  •  irritability
  •  angry outbursts
  •  aggressive behaviors
  •  self-destructive behaviors (substance abuse/reckless driving)

Negative Changes in Thinking/Mood 

  •  negative thoughts about self and others
  •  lack of interest in activities
  •  difficulty maintaining relationships with others
  •  memory problems
  •  feeling hopeless of future
  •  emotional numbness – feeling detached

To be diagnosed with PTSD, one must experience one or more of the following symptoms:

  •  reliving the event
  •  upsetting dreams/nightmares
  •  experience of flashbacks
  •  emotional distress related to the event

Holistic Treatment Options 

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) – CBT can be used to help turn BLUE thoughts into true thoughts, helping one move in a more positive thought process.
  • Tapping (EFT) – Emotional Thought Field Therapy is a technique used to help with negative emotions. A trained professional can help you through this technique and it can even be done at home.
  • Deep Breathing – Diaphramatic breathing is a technique used to help calm the mind and body.
  • MMJ Assisted Therapy – Medical marijuana or CBD oil can be used to help reduce the symptoms associated with PTSD.
  • Exercise/Time in Nature – Spending time outdoors helps reset and recharge the mind and body to promote a positive mindset.
  • Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils – Essential oils have long been used to promote a calming effect and overall wellness.

Contact us today at Makin Wellness for a free consultation and begin your wellness journey today! 

About Makin Wellness

Founded in 2017 , Makin Wellness is Pittsburgh’s premier therapy & coaching centers located in Downtown Pittsburgh and Downtown New Kensington. The company’s mission is to help people heal and become happy again.  Makin Wellness specializes in depression, anxiety, addiction, trauma, medical marijuana assited treatment and relationship counseling.


Getting an evaluation at Makin Wellness does not guarantee you will have or be diagnosed with PTSD or Opioid Use Disorder . We are able to provide ongoing treatment in all of our offices and via telepsych.   For those struggling with Opiate Use Disorder, you may qualify if conventional therapeutic interventions are contraindicated or ineffective, or for which adjunctive therapy is indicated in combination with primary therapeutic interventions. We are not certifying physicians for medical marijuana in the State of PA.  We are able to evaluate, diagnose and provide treatment for mental health and addiction conditions.  If you fit criteria for PTSD or Opioid Use Disorder , you would still need to see a certifying physician after the evaluation in order to get your medical marijuana card. Cannabis is still considered illegal under federal law. Please refer to the Pennsylvania Department of Health  or contact us if you have any additional questions.

Laura Stewart, BA, CHN Makin Wellness

Laura Stewart, BA, CHN Makin Wellness

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