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Ask Dr. Schwartz
Psychotherapy and Mental Health questions

PTSD

Hi Allan,

This is not a new subject for me. What I find extremely unpleasant are the disconnected, numbing  experiences that are everyday occurances. I was told that my coritisol levels were at a 4. After a blood test, my Psychiatrist infomed me that this level is very low. He said it occurs in war and trauma victims. I'm glad that the Dr. caught this.  He is helping to raise the corisol levels. However, their is always the numbing, unreal, and detatched self. It has become so common to experience this that it doesn't even cause painc. It's just a really bad experience all the time . I am now  hypersensitve to sounds and light and noise hurts my ears. I've had to try and make it easier on myself by staying home at all the time, in a dim and quiet apartment. This is how I cope. However when the disconnection and detatchment is at its worst, it's as if my whole body is in pieces. Nothing is together anymore.

Another way I have learned to deal with the extreme detatchment is to self harm. Self harming is a jolt. It jolts me back into awareness. At least I can feel again, even if it is temporary. My question: is this all about PTSD or a Dissociative Disorder? All I know is that whatever is causing these episodes is very uncomfortable. I do not know how to overcome what is happening to me other then to cope the best way I can.

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