Do I have work-related PTSD?

Many people in Missouri equate post-traumatic stress disorder with military vets. However, it is not uncommon for people to develop PTSD after working in high-stress environments for years. Workers do not necessarily need to experience accidents and direct trauma to develop the condition. They can develop it from witnessing catastrophic events. The constant exposure to stress, workplace politics and other toxic conditions can also cause workers to develop health issues and have otherwise avoidable work accidents. 

If you work in an office, retail, health care or manufacturing environment, take some time to learn the signs of PTSD to know when you should seek out professional help. 

Psychological signs of post-traumatic stress disorder 

Some psychological symptoms of PTSD are mistaken for bad moods. People who suffer from the condition may have mood swings, anxiety, trouble concentrating and remembering things, and trouble completing their work duties. They may also appear to be angry, irrational and always on guard. The workplace may seem like a confusing and hostile place to them and can lead to absenteeism. Their emotional reactions to PTSD triggers can lead to them developing self-destructive behaviors, such as alcoholism, drug abuse and reckless driving. 

Physical signs of post-traumatic stress disorder

Stress does not just cause a person to suffer mentally. It can also affect physical health. People who are experiencing PTSD often have trouble sleeping and eating, undergo sudden changes in weight, experience elevations in blood pressure, and develop other chronic health conditions. Suffering from PTSD can also increase the risk of workplace accidents such as falls and on-the-job auto accidents. 

It is important for you to understand that not everyone responds to stress and trauma the same way. Many PTSD sufferers experience frequent flashbacks and heightened feelings of tension, and may try to withdraw when they encounter situations that remind them of traumatic events they are unable to cope with.

If you believe you have post-traumatic stress disorder due to your work situation, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. To learn more, please see Hullverson Law Firm‘s overview of benefits available through Missouri workers’ comp.