Many people experience a traumatic event in life such as a road traffic collision; the death of a person; or physical, sexual, or emotional abuse.
Most of us are able to readjust without experiencing long-term problems, but others might develop a type of anxiety disorder called post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PTSD can occur immediately following the traumatic incident or weeks, months, or years afterwards.
PTSD is often mistaken as something that only affects members of the armed forces who have been in combat, but everyone responds to trauma differently, and trauma is not exclusive to a warzone.
Over eight million Americans over the age 18 have PTSD, including 30% of first responders and 20% of police. Those who have experienced traumatic events previously are at a higher risk of developing PTSD. In the US ,3.6% of adults experienced PTSD in the previous 12 months, and 40% of children have experienced at least one trauma during childhood. PTSD develops in 67% of people exposed to Mass violence.