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Health Matters: COVID-19 pandemic has also been a source of trauma for so many people

Even after a stressor is long gone, Dr. Goldberg Mintz says trauma triggers remind our bodies of the scary thing we experienced.

HOUSTON — It’s been a tough year, and the COVID-19 pandemic has provided potential sources of trauma, which can lead to post traumatic stress disorder.

Dr. Melissa Goldberg Mintz says PTSD can happen to veterans, people who have been through physical or sexual abuse, or those who have experienced natural disasters.

But the COVID-19 pandemic has also been a source of trauma for so many people.

“People who have been exposed to more traumatic stress over the course of their lives, are more vulnerable to develop PTSD,” says Dr. Goldberg Mintz.

It’s estimated one in 11 adults in the U.S. will be diagnosed with PTSD.

Symptoms are generally grouped into four types:

  • Intrusive memories
  • Avoidance
  • Negative change in thinking and mood
  • Physical and emotional reactions

Even after a stressor is long gone, Dr. Goldber Mintz says trauma triggers remind our bodies of the scary thing we experienced.

She says most people can, and do, recover over time.

But if PTSD symptoms begin to affect your everyday life, it’s time to seek professional help.