Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can occur after a person has been through a traumatic event. A traumatic event is something terrible and scary that someone sees, hears about or that happens to the person, such as: (1) combat exposure/military sexual trauma; (2) child sexual or physical abuse; (3) terrorist attack; (4) sexual or physical assault; (5) serious accidents, like a car wreck; and (6) natural disasters, like a fire, tornado, hurricane, flood or earthquake. During a traumatic event, the person thinks their life or others' lives are in danger. Treatment for PTSD can help and often includes psychotherapy and/or medication. For more information on PTSD and treatments available sponsored by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), visit VA's National Center for PTSD website.

For more on PTSD, see the PTSD section.

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