In the action movie We Die Young, Jean-Claude Van Damme’s character plays a war veteran suffering from a head trauma that leaves him incapable of proper speech and PTSD. For the most part, the director of the movie is said to have worked with veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan for seven years to get a better perspective of the role and to bring justice to the idea of real men and women who suffer from this haunting mental health condition.

We hear the acronym PTSD sometimes and they’re usually associated with men and women who’ve experienced a traumatizing event. It stands for ‘post-traumatic stress disorder’ and it happens more frequently than you think. Of course, PTSD has long-standing myths and the like but what is it really? Here are 5 hidden truths of PTSD that you might have not known about.

PTSD can result from a wide range of experiences.

Not all PTSD’s stem from war. There are a variety of reasons for it, especially if the event is traumatizing. A high percentage of people who experience PTSD are war veterans, that is why the issue is associated with them most of the time but it can also happen to people who experience physical and mental abuse, a person who witnesses a terribly violent event, a person who witnesses suicide, living through disasters, and more. 20% of people who experience PTSD are not soldiers or people who have experienced the horrible outcomes of war.

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Symptoms can appear years after the traumatic event.

PTSD symptoms often times do not show up right away. They could show up months after the traumatic event, weeks, days, and even years.

There are different types of flashbacks.

A PTSD will oftentimes have a trigger and they differ from person to person. The same applies to the waves of flashbacks. Some people have really vivid flashbacks which feel like they’ve been taken back to the same traumatic event. Some people get a ‘middle-ground’ flashback which isn’t as worse as a full-blown one but the person experiences anxiety and terror suddenly. Others do not get flashbacks at all.

Exercise helps. A lot.

Studies show that exercising helps with mental health issues. This also applies to PTSD, with more people turning to exercise to get over their issue, aside from therapy.

Young people demonstrate different symptoms of PTSD.

PTSD also occurs in young people and you’d be surprised that it affects a lot of children. They demonstrate different emotions though and because their minds and emotions don’t work like the adults, they usually express themselves through how they play with others, their creativity, and such.