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June is PTSD Awareness Month

PTSD Awareness Month aims to spread awareness for a condition that affects over 12 million Americans.

Over 12 million people in the United States — nearly one out of every 25 Americans — are living with PTSD. However, most will not receive the treatment they need. This may be due to stigma, lack of awareness of available treatments, and limited access to mental health resources. 

 

PTSD Awareness Month represents a crucial effort to bridge the gap between the millions of people affected by PTSD and the treatment they need through education, advocacy, and support.  

What is PTSD?

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that develops after a traumatic event, such as military combat, car accidents, natural disasters, childbirth, or sexual assault. Individuals with PTSD may experience flashbacks or intrusive memories, nightmares and trouble sleeping, mood changes, and heightened physical and emotional reactions. These symptoms can interfere with the individual’s ability to function in daily life. 

 

Treatment for PTSD often involves a combination of psychotherapy, such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and medication. While the effectiveness of treatment can vary depending on the individual and the severity of their symptoms, many people with PTSD experience significant improvement. Even so, people with PTSD often don’t get the help they need. PTSD Awareness Month is aimed at spreading the word that effective treatments are available.  

5 ways to participate in PTSD Awareness Month

Here are some simple yet impactful ideas to recognize PTSD Awareness Month: 

1. Be mindful of your language

Refrain from using language that stigmatizes or trivializes PTSD and other mental health conditions. Avoid using terms like “crazy”, “nuts”, or “psycho”, even when not specifically talking about someone with mental illness. By being mindful of our language, we can end negative stereotypes and create a more supportive environment for individuals living with PTSD. 

2. Launch a social media campaign

Throughout the month of June, share facts and information about PTSD, promote resources like the Veterans Crisis Line, and highlight personal stories from individuals living with PTSD. You can also encourage your followers to share their own experiences or messages of support using the hashtag #PTSDAwareness. 

3. Participate in a virtual walk

Even if you only have 30 minutes, you can be a part of the movement to raise awareness for PTSD. Sign up here to participate in the Step Up for PTSD Awareness virtual walk. Then print your race bib, lace up your shoes, and hit the road (or treadmill). Be sure to snap a photo of yourself participating in the chosen activity and post it to social media using the hashtag #StepUpForPTSD. 

Register for the Step Up for PTSD Awareness Virtual Walk
June is PTSD Awareness Month! Register for the Step Up for PTSD Awareness Virtual Walk

4. Host an art therapy workshop

If you have more time to devote this month, consider partnering with local mental health professionals to host an art therapy workshop. Art can serve as a therapeutic outlet for individuals living with PTSD and mental illness, allowing them to express their feelings and experiences in a safe and non-judgmental way.  

5. Provide (or participate in) workplace sensitivity training

Partner with local businesses and organizations to provide workplace sensitivity training focused on understanding and supporting employees with PTSD. This training can include education on recognizing PTSD symptoms, creating a supportive work environment, and implementing accommodations when necessary. By raising awareness and promoting empathy among employers and colleagues, this initiative can help individuals with PTSD feel more comfortable and supported in the workplace. 

Download the free Disability Events calendar

However you choose to participate, your efforts will help raise awareness for PTSD. For more ideas like these, download the free Disability Events Calendar.  

Free Resource: 2024 Disability Events Calendar
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