PTSD: National Center for PTSD
Types of Trauma
Types of Trauma
These articles describe common traumas, their prevalence and potential impact on survivors, while also addressing treatment implications.
War and Military
- Traumatic Stress in Women Veterans
Discusses stressors faced by women Veterans and reviews research on coping and VA changes in services for women.
- Military Sexual Trauma: Issue in Caring for Veterans
Discusses the meaning, epidemiology, and psychological effects of military sexual trauma (MST) among men and women and includes information on screening for and assessing MST, as well as available treatments.
- PTSD Among Ethnic Minority Veterans
Discusses what research has shown regarding the role of race and ethnicity as important variables for understanding PTSD, the impact of race-related stressors, and what professionals should keep in mind regarding ethnic differences.
- Psychological Trauma for American Indians Who Served in Vietnam
Reviews findings from the Matsunaga Project in regard to readjustment experiences of American Indians who served in the Vietnam War.
- Psychological Trauma for Native Hawaiians and Americans of Japanese Ancestry Who Served in Vietnam
Reviews findings from the Matsunaga Project in regard to readjustment experiences of Native Hawaiians and Japanese Americans who served in the Vietnam War.
- Peacekeepers and Traumatic Stress
Discusses risk of trauma in peacekeeping situations, prevalence of PTSD in peacekeepers, and risk and resilience factors.
Disaster and Terrorism
- The Impact of Disaster and Mass Violence Events on Mental Health
Discusses normal and problematic responses to disaster, including bereavement complications, acute stress disorder, PTSD symptoms, and associated problems.
- Phases of Traumatic Stress Reactions Following Disaster and Mass Violence
Describes the typical phases of reaction to disaster and mass violence, including: impact, immediate, intermediate, and long term.
- Risk and Resilience Factors After Disaster and Mass Violence
Reviews the risk and resilience (or protective) factors at the individual, social, and community level that impact the influence of disaster or mass violence events on those affected.
- Traumatic Effects of Specific Types of Disasters
Discusses effects of fires, floods, tornadoes, hurricanes, and earthquakes, with research findings on specific major disasters that have occurred.
- Research Findings on the Traumatic Stress Effects of Terrorism
Discusses terrorist attacks that have occurred over the past 20 years and reports some of the research findings on reactions, including PTSD.
Response and Treatment
- Working with Trauma Survivors: What Workers Need to Know
Information regarding traumatic stress, for the people who are working with trauma survivors.
- Helping Survivors: Early Interventions Following Disaster and Mass Violence
Reviews immediate actions that support the well-being of disaster-affected individuals, including evidence-informed recovery elements and Psychological First Aid (PFA).
- Helping Survivors: Intermediate Treatment Interventions Following Disaster and Mass Violence
Reviews interventions appropriate for the weeks to months following disaster or mass violence events that include supportive counseling, resource connection, resilience-enhancing strategies, and assessment and formal treatment for those at highest risk for ongoing problems.
- Helping Survivors: Long-Term Treatment Interventions Following Disaster and Mass Violence
Describes research support for trauma-focused psychotherapy and other interventions appropriate for adult disaster survivors who continue to express symptoms in the months to years following an event.
- Types of Debriefing Following Disasters
Describes several types of debriefing following a trauma, and discusses the pros and cons of this form of mental health intervention.
- Managing Grief after Disaster
Offers clinical advice regarding grief management after a disaster, including strategies to address traumatic grief and complications of bereavement.
Manuals and Tools
- Psychological First Aid (PFA): Field Operations Guide
PFA is an evidence-informed modular approach for assisting people in the immediate aftermath of disaster to reduce initial distress and to foster short and long-term adaptive functioning. The guide, created jointly with the National Child Traumatic Stress Network, is available in multiple languages and includes handouts for survivors. Online training and a YouTube PFA Channel are available.
- Skills for Psychological Recovery (SPR) Guide
SPR aims to help survivors gain skills to manage distress and cope with post-disaster stress and adversity. SPR is intended to follow Psychological First Aid (PFA) in the weeks and months following disaster and mass violence events. The guide was created jointly with the National Child Traumatic Stress Network as well as others involved in disaster response; training information is available.
- PFA Mobile
Following disasters or emergencies, the PFA Mobile app can assist responders who provide Psychological First Aid (PFA) to adults, families, and children.
Helping Specific Populations
- Impact of Disaster on Older Adults
Describes risk and protective factors among older adults that affect mental health outcomes following a disaster.
- Terrorist Attacks and Children
Discusses how children respond to events of terrorism, and offers tips for what providers and parents can do to help.
- Disaster Rescue and Response Workers
Provides information specific to disaster response and recovery workers on work-related stress reactions and offers tips to help.
Disaster and Terrorism Research
- Media Coverage of Traumatic Events: Research on Effects
Discusses effects of news media coverage on children and adults and suggests guidance providers can offer patients, including children and parents.
- Disasters and Domestic Violence
Reviews research investigating whether domestic violence (DV) increases after a disaster or if DV influences women's post-disaster recovery.
- Disasters and Substance Abuse or Dependence
Reviews research on substance use, abuse, and dependence following disasters.
- Sexual Trauma: Information for Women's Medical Providers
Provides basic information for medical providers working with women who have a history of sexual trauma and includes suggestions on how to prevent distress in patients.
- Sexual Assault Against Females
Defines sexual assault against females and describes how often it occurs, characteristics of perpetrators, and common reactions.
- Child Sexual Abuse
Defines child sexual abuse and includes information about prevalence, effects, perpetrator characteristics and safety advice.
- Community Violence
Describes the effects of witnessing or experiencing community violence, such as riots, workplace assaults, or other widespread abuse. Includes treatment and prevention information.
- Traumatic Stress and Motor Vehicle Accidents
Reviews research on the relationship between motor vehicle accidents (MVA) and PTSD, including risk factors and specific MVA treatment considerations.