Log in

No account? Create an account
14 February 2012 @ 04:20 pm
On a related note, some may wonder what flashbacks actually are. We see on TV the war veteran who is actually having visions of events that happened in Viet Nam or Iraq or Afghanistan. Some may experience flashbacks like that. However, the garden-variety flashback most of us have is a bit simpler but no less devastating.

Basically having a flashback throws you back into the moment you were traumatized originally in terms of how you feel emotionally and physically. Your fight or flight reflex is triggered. Your pulse rate increases, you can feel your heart race, you are hyper alert, looking for the source of danger, and sometimes you freeze in place, unable to act. You might physically lash out if you are very disoriented. As time goes on you learn to talk yourself down in your mind. I have found that the flashbacks get less severe in nature and that my heart doesn't race as fast, they don't last as long, and I am better at reorienting myself. But I still have them. I still try to avoid strong triggers like being yelled at or having things against my neck.

In the hospital the nurse had to point out to me that my collar wasn't, in fact, pressing on my throat. I realized that the choking feeling I had was a flashback, not a true thing. It's like that.

For a long time after the Loma Prieta earthquake, many of us jumped if a big semi drove by, shaking the building we were in. We were all ready to dodge falling objects or dive under a table. :)

http://www.mnwelldir.org/docs/mental_health/flashbacks.htm for more info.
Mari Adkinsmariadkins on February 15th, 2012 02:32 am (UTC)
oh i can't stand anything against my neck!
Tapatitapati on February 16th, 2012 01:32 am (UTC)
yeah that's the worst if you've ever been choked and I bet Rihanna has that one too. :(
Michele TattoliMichele Tattoli on February 15th, 2012 11:00 pm (UTC)
I had a mild form of PTSD after my deprogramming. I haven't had flash backs in years but when I did strange things could set it off, like hearing a song or just the tone of voice someone spoke to me in.
Tapatitapati on February 16th, 2012 01:32 am (UTC)
it is bizarre how little things can set it off, unexpectedly :(