Each person will react in a different way to a traumatic life event such as watching a loved one die or being in a road traffic accident. Acute Stress Disorder can develop in such a person within one month of the event.
During this time, evidence of the development of dissociation, severe anxiety, and other symptoms can be observed. Individuals may experience guilt about simple everyday tasks and may discover that activities which were previously enjoyable have now either become impossible or very difficult to enjoy.
Other symptoms include feelings of being detached from one’s body, difficulty concentrating, experiencing the world as dreamlike or unreal, or dissociative amnesia—increasing difficulty remembering details about the traumatic event.