Glossary

This glossary includes the names and definitions for anxiety and related disorders, including nature of each disorder, experience, impact, treatment, and resources.

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Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

The defining characteristic of a traumatic event is its capacity to provoke fear, helplessness, or horror in response to the threat of injury or death.

A child or adolescent who experiences a catastrophic event may develop ongoing difficulties known as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The stressful or traumatic event involves a situation where someone’s life has been threatened or severe injury has occurred. Examples include: being the victim or a witness of physical abuse, sexual abuse, violence in the home or in the community, automobile accidents, natural disasters (such as flood, fire, earthquakes), and being diagnosed with a life-threatening illness. A child’s risk of developing PTSD is related to the seriousness of the trauma, whether the trauma is repeated, the child’s proximity to the trauma, and his/her relationship to the victim(s).

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