More than 200,000 cases of PTSD could be triggered by pandemic, experts warn

There may be more than 200,000 new cases of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is activated by Covid-19 epidemic, new data shows.

Experts have warned that frontline health workers and Covid-19 patient People who need intensive care in a hospital may be at higher risk of developing an anxiety disorder.

According to the Royal College of Psychiatrists (RCP), new estimates by the NHS Strategy Unit suggest there could be 230,000 new referrals for PTSD between 2020/21 and 2022/23 in the UK.

A university-cited poll, of 709 intensive care workers from six NHS hospitals in England who worked during the first wave of the pandemic, found that two in five workers reported Report symptoms of PTSD.

The RCP says this is more than double the rate found in veterans with recent combat experience.

The university also points to a study that found that 35% of Covid-19 patients who were put on a ventilator would experience widespread symptoms of PTSD. The study was published in the journal BJPsych Open this early year.

In November, RCP publish an extensive resource tool for patients going through PTSD or anyone who knows someone who has it, detailing what the condition is, what could be causing it, and what types of treatments are available.

Professor Neil Greenberg, the resource tool’s chief editor, said: “There is a common misunderstanding that only those in the armed forces can develop PTSD – anyone exposed to an event Traumatic events carry the risk of disease.

“If left untreated, it can ruin the lives of those who have it as well as negatively affect their family, friends and co-workers.”

Professor Greenberg emphasized that there are certain jobs that carry a higher risk of developing PTSD because “it is more common to experience traumatic events”, such as roles in care facilities. health.

“It is important that anyone exposed to traumatic events receive appropriate support at work and at home,” he added.

“Early and effective support can reduce the likelihood of PTSD, and those affected will be able to access evidence-based treatment in a timely manner. Especially our NHS staff, who are at increased risk because of this unprecedented crisis. ”

People with PTSD can experience intense negative emotions, thoughts, and memories caused by a traumatic event, which can be very stressful, frightening, and traumatic.

One patient, Dee, 52, of Bristol, became seriously ill with Covid-19 last year and said she was experiencing “severe anxiety” due to persistent breathing problems.

She said: “This included confusing scenarios of not being able to breathe and NHS staff in PPE suits taking me to hospital.

“My sleep was badly affected and I started using alcohol as a coping mechanism.

Dee added: “I tested positive for Covid-19 for the second time. “I’m having a hard time, but I’m not confident that I can get the help I need.”

You can learn more about PTSD and its symptoms here. For confidential support with mental health or suicidal feelings, you can contact The Samaritans on their free 24-hour support phone by calling 116 123 or emailing

Additional report of PA More than 200,000 cases of PTSD could be triggered by pandemic, experts warn

Tom Vazquez

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