Dr. David Hemenway: ‘I’m still a little confused’ on ‘post-traumatic stress disorder’
A psychologist has come out to say that he still believes the term “post-traumatic stress disorder” is too vague and not as helpful as it once was.
Dr. Hemenways is the author of a new book called Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: A Practical Guide.
“I was surprised that the diagnosis is still confusing to many people,” Hemenws said during an interview on the CBS “60 Minutes” show.
“I’ve worked with a lot of PTSD survivors who have experienced a lot, and I’ve been able to help them with a diagnosis that I think is a very, very useful diagnosis for a lot more people.”
Hemenws was one of several psychologists interviewed by CBS News to discuss the mental health problems that plague veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
He said he believes that the symptoms of PTSD are similar to other psychological conditions, such as post-traumatic anxiety disorder.
“Post-traumatic symptoms can be triggered by a variety of things,” Hemanws said.
“We don’t know what triggers them, what triggers trauma, and that’s a very difficult thing to do in therapy because we know what makes people react.
We don’t understand what triggers PTSD.”
Hemansws is the president and CEO of the National Association for Post-traumatic Stress Disorder.
He is also a psychologist who served in the Army as a psychiatrist, and served as a clinical associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
“There is a significant gap in our understanding of PTSD symptoms, which is a big problem,” Heminws said, referring to the lack of knowledge on how to diagnose PTSD.
Hemenways said he has been able help people with PTSD and traumatic stress disorder.
He also said that some people who have PTSD may be struggling with depression.
“It’s a lot like anxiety disorders,” Homenws said of PTSD.
“It’s an anxiety disorder with symptoms of depression.
And I know people who are in a depression who are able to take a pill, and they are not depressed at all.”
Heminws also said it is important for people to get support.
“The only way to stop it from happening is to stop using the word ‘toxic,'” Heminys said.
Hemins said the VA and the Department of Defense are also working to improve the mental illness diagnostic system.
“We have a new set of diagnostic guidelines and we are making some progress in getting it out there,” Hemins told CBS News.
“There’s a process underway that’s really encouraging and exciting.”
In a statement, the VA said it has developed a set of new diagnostic criteria to help veterans who are struggling with PTSD.
“While we continue to improve our ability to diagnose and treat PTSD, it is clear that the term ‘post traumatic stress syndrome’ is not a diagnostic tool that can adequately diagnose the disorder,” the VA statement said.
The VA is encouraging veterans to seek out services from the National Veterans Service Center, which has counselors and support groups for those who are experiencing post-treating PTSD.