20076 Health Library | Health and Wellness | Wellmont Health System
  • Talking to Your Doctor About Post-traumatic Stress Disorder

    You have a unique medical history. Therefore, it is essential to talk with your doctor about your personal risk factors and/or experience with post-traumatic stress disorder. By talking openly and regularly with your doctor, you can take an active role in your care.

    General Tips for Gathering Information

    Here are some tips that will make it easier for you to talk to your doctor:
    • Bring someone else with you. It helps to have another person hear what is said and think of questions to ask.
    • Write out your questions ahead of time, so you don't forget them.
    • Write down the answers you get, and make sure you understand what you are hearing. Ask for clarification, if necessary.
    • Don't be afraid to ask your questions or ask where you can find more information about what you are discussing. You have a right to know.

    Specific Questions to Ask Your doctor

    About Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
    Talk to your doctor about the traumatic event and your feelings. Describe any scary memories, depression, trouble sleeping, or anger. Let him or her know if these problems keep you from doing everyday things and living your life.
    In addition, you may want to ask the following questions:
    • Could I possibly have some other illness?
    • Can I have a physical exam to be sure?
    • Have you helped people with PTSD?
    • If not, can you refer me to a doctor or counselor who has experience treating PTSD?
    About Treatment Options
    • What treatment options are available to me?
    • If you are prescribed medicine:
      • How long will it take to work?
      • What are the benefits
      • What are the side effects?
      If you decide to try counseling, interview counselors and find one with whom you feel comfortable discussing your problems. Questions to ask the counselor include:
      • What is your training and experience in treating PTSD?
      • What is your basic approach to treatment?
      • How long will treatment last?
      • What is the length and frequency of treatment sessions?
      • Which health insurance do you accept?
      • Do you have fee schedules and sliding scale fees to accommodate various financial circumstances?
    About Lifestyle Changes
      What lifestyle changes, if any, can help reduce my symptoms? For example:
      • Diet
      • Relaxation and stress management techniques
      • Exercise
      • Limit use of alcohol and drugs
    About Outlook
    • What are my chances of recovery from PTSD?
    • What is the likelihood of recurrence of PTSD and/or related conditions? What can I do about it?
    • Can you recommend a support group for me?

    References

    National Institute of Mental Health website. Available at: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/ .

    Anxiety Disorders Association of America website. Available at: http://www.adaa.org/ .

    Revision Information

  • Join WellZones today.

    Make a Change For LifeLearn more

    Wellmont LiveWell is creating a new tradition of wellness in the mountains by providing individuals with tools and encouragement to live healthier lifestyles.

  • HeartSHAPE Spotlight

    At risk for a heart attack? Learn more

    Fight heart disease early and prevent heart attacks with HeartSHAPE® - a painless, non-invasive test that takes pictures of your heart to scan for early-stage coronary disease.

  • Calories and Energy Needs

    Calorie NeedsLearn more

    How many calories do you need to eat each day to maintain your weight and fuel your physical activity? Enter a few of your stats into this calculator to find out.

  • Ideal Body Weight

    Ideal Body WeightLearn more

    Using body mass index as a reference, this calculator determines your ideal body weight range. All you need to do is enter your height.

  • Body Mass Index

    Body Mass IndexLearn more

    This tool considers your height and weight to assess your weight status.


  • Can we help answer your questions?

    Wellmont Nurse Connection is your resource for valuable health information any time, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Speak to a Nurse any time, day or night, at (423) 723-6877 or toll-free at 1-877-230-NURSE.