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Fourth of July and PTSD: How to be mindful while celebrating

July 2, 2019

The Fourth of July poses a special time of year that centers on celebrating the nation's independence.

Since its inception, the U.S. has celebrated this holiday with traditional fireworks shows across the country.

And while the act is meant as a tribute, it can also cause some unwanted post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms. Veterans, who have risked their lives for the very freedom and independence we celebrate each year, often experience PTSD episodes that can be triggered by sudden/loud explosions, flashes of light and the smell of powder, that can also be associated with fireworks. These celebratory explosives can cause vets to relive some traumatic experiences that took place during their time of service.

While fireworks on the Fourth of July are an important part of American history, it's also important to consider those who struggle with PTSD.

Some individuals cope by using relaxation techniques or simply by being able to visibly see the fireworks show so that they know what to expect. Others might use headphones, music or other distractions to help lessen symptoms.

The most important thing others can do to help is to be mindful this year. Watch for yard signs in your neighborhood that might indicate a vet is nearby, and be on the lookout for signs that ask for courtesy when using fireworks. Also, check on your friends and family that you know have been diagnosed with PTSD.

Being aware that these celebrations may affect those diagnosed with PTSD, is not only the kind thing to do, but it is the right thing to do.

If you or someone you know is struggling with PTSD, please reach out to Clearwater Counseling, PC. Our therapists are ready and willing to help you live your life to the fullest.

Schedule your appointment today by calling 308-210-8487 or by emailing   

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