Posts Tagged ‘C-PTSD’

Stress, PTSD and our Heart

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A growing body of compelling scientific evidence is demonstrating a link between mental and emotional attitudes, physiological health and long-term well-being:

* 60% to 80% of primary care doctor visits are related to stress, yet only 3% of patients receive stress management help.

* In a study of 5,716 middle-aged people, those with the highest self-regulation abilities were over 50 times more likely to be alive and without chronic disease 15 years later than those with the lowest self-regulation scores.

* Positive emotions are a reliable predictor of better health, even for those without food or shelter while negative emotions are a reliable predictor of worse health even when basic needs like food, shelter and safety are met.

* A Harvard Medical School Study of 1,623 heart attack survivors found that when subjects became angry during emotional conflicts, their risk of subsequent heart attacks was more than double that of those who remained calm.

* A review of 225 studies concluded that positive emotions promote and foster sociability and activity, altruism, strong bodies and immune systems, effective conflict resolution skills, success and thriving.

* A study of elderly nuns found that those who expressed the most positive emotions in early adulthood lived an average of 10 years longer.

* Men who complain of high anxiety are up to six times more likely than calmer men to suffer sudden cardiac death.

* In a groundbreaking study of 1,200 people at high risk of poor health, those who learned to alter unhealthy mental and emotional attitudes through self-regulation training were over four times more likely to be alive 13 years later than an equal-sized control group.

* A 20-year study of over 1,700 older men conducted by the Harvard School of Public Health found that worry about social conditions, health and personal finances all significantly increased the risk of coronary heart disease.

* Over one-half of heart disease cases are not explained by the standard risk factors such as high cholesterol, smoking or sedentary lifestyle.

* An international study of 2,829 people ages 55 to 85 found that individuals who reported the highest levels of personal mastery – feelings of control over life events – had a nearly 60% lower risk of than those who felt relatively helpless in the face of life’s challenges.

* According to a Mayo Clinic study of individuals with heart disease, psychological stress was the strongest predictor of future cardiac events such as cardiac death, cardiac arrest and heart attacks.

* Three 10-year studies concluded that emotional stress was more predictive of death from cancer and cardiovascular disease than from smoking; people who were unable to effectively manage their stress had a 40% higher death rate than nonstressed individuals.

* A study of heart attack survivors showed that patients’ emotional states and relationships in the period after myocardial infarction were as important as the disease severity in determining their prognosis.

* Separate studies showed that the risk of developing heart disease is significantly increased for people who impulsively vent their anger as well as for those who tend to repress angry feelings.



The Opoid Crisis: 7 Years 76 billion pills: Washington Post

The data in the DEA database tracks the path of every single pain pill sold in the United States, including oxycodone, above. (John Moore/Getty Images)




America’s largest drug companies saturated the country with 76 billion oxycodone and hydrocodone pain pills from 2006 through 2012 as the nation’s deadliest drug epidemic spun out of control, according to previously undisclosed company data released as part of the largest civil action in U.S. history.

The information comes from a database maintained by the Drug Enforcement Administration that tracks the path of every single pain pill sold in the United States — from manufacturers and distributors to pharmacies in every town and city.

The data provides an unprecedented look at the surge of legal pain pills that fueled the prescription opioid epidemic, which has resulted in nearly 100,000 deaths from 2006 through 2012.

Three companies manufactured 88 percent of the opioids: SpecGx, a subsidiary of Mallinckrodt; ­Actavis Pharma; and Par Pharmaceutical, a subsidiary of Endo Pharmaceuticals.

Purdue Pharma, which the plaintiffs allege sparked the epidemic in the 1990s with its introduction of OxyContin, its version of oxycodone, was ranked fourth among manufacturers with about 3 percent of the market.

The volume of the pills handled by the companies skyrocketed as the epidemic surged,

increasing about 51 percent from 8.4 billion in 2006 to 12.6 billion in 2012.

By contrast, doses of morphine, a well-known treatment for severe pain, averaged slightly more than 500 million a year during the period.



My two cents: If DEA knew about this spike, why did they not react?

Triggers and our fight or flight mechanism



This is a common sense look, not an intense scientific diatribe, more my organic experience.

When PTSD literally exploded, that is my fight or flight fired one day, life was never the same. No one understands a nervous system running on tilt with all those drugs.

Cortisol and adrenaline were dumped into my blood stream. Our Sympathetic nervous system powers up instantly, jolted into action.

The problem became the number of times my fight or flight mechanism fired each day.

10 maybe 15 times a day, PTSD spotted imminent danger, dumping more and more cortisol and adrenaline.

I was so wired my body shook. I stopped functioning, not leaving the house for six months.

Fight, flight or freeze does not happen after the first couple of triggers firing.

We freeze solid, try to avoid at all costs, start to isolate and live in a panic stage for a while.

I did little healing during this extremely uncomfortable feeling.

Cortisol is used to defend us in a life and death circumstance, not be our normal at rest daily existence.

Our fight or flight mechanism rarely fires in a non traumatized brain.

We rarely run into a 1200 pound mother bear charging at us before lunch.

This pandemic and quarantine are an invisible danger that has impacted our children and every person suffering from any mental disorder.

Have gratitude for the ability to resist and take action.

Many who follow this blog take daily action and are looking for wisdom to find a way out.

We have to want to heal more than any other desire in our life.

Our loved ones need for us to do this also fir their benefit.

Lots of purpose for all of us.



Neurocardiology: The Brain Of the Heart

Figure 1.2 Microscopic image of interconnected intrinsic cardiac ganglia in the human heart. The thin, light-blue structures are multiple axons that connect the ganglia.

Courtesy of Dr. J. Andrew Armour



“While the Laceys were conducting their research in psychophysiology, a small group of cardiologists joined forces with a group of neurophysiologists and neuroanatomists to explore areas of mutual interest. This represented the beginning of the new discipline now called neurocardiology. One of their early findings is that the heart has a complex neural network that is sufficiently extensive to be characterized as a brain on the heart (Figure 1.2).

The heart-brain, as it is commonly called, or intrinsic cardiac nervous system, is an intricate network of complex ganglia, neurotransmitters, proteins and support cells, the same as those of the brain in the head.

The heart-brain’s neural circuitry enables it to act independently of the cranial brain to learn, remember, make decisions and even feel and sense.

Descending activity from the brain in the head via the sympathetic and parasympathetic branches of the ANS is integrated into the heart’s intrinsic nervous system along with signals arising from sensory neurons in the heart that detect pressure, heart rate, heart rhythm and hormones.

The anatomy and functions of the intrinsic cardiac nervous system and its connections with the brain have been explored extensively by neurocardiologists. In terms of heart-brain communication, it is generally well-known that the efferent (descending) pathways in the autonomic nervous system are involved in the regulation of the heart.

However, it is less appreciated that the majority of fibers in the vagus nerves are afferent (ascending) in nature. Furthermore, more of these ascending neural pathways are related to the heart (and cardiovascular system) than to any other organ.



This means the heart sends more information to the brain than the brain sends to the heart.



More recent research shows that the neural interactions between the heart and brain are more complex than previously thought.

In addition, the intrinsic cardiac nervous system has both short-term and long-term memory functions and can operate independently of central neuronal command.”



Heart-Brain Communication



“Traditionally, the study of communication pathways between the head and heart has been approached from a rather one-sided perspective, with scientists focusing primarily on the heart’s responses to the brain’s commands.

We have learned, however, that communication between the heart and brain actually is a dynamic, ongoing, two-way dialogue, with each organ continuously influencing the other’s function.

Research has shown that the heart communicates to the brain in four major ways: neurologically (through the transmission of nerve impulses), biochemically (via hormones and neurotransmitters), biophysically (through pressure waves) and energetically (through electromagnetic field interactions).

Communication along all these conduits significantly affects the brain’s activity. Moreover, our research shows that messages the heart sends to the brain also can affect performance.”

The heart communicates with the brain and body in four ways:

Neurological communication (nervous system)

Biochemical communication (hormones)

Biophysical communication (pulse wave)

Energetic communication (electromagnetic fields)



PTSD does not own me: Attitude




Yes, I am damaged from serious childhood abuse, but PTSD does not own me!

Yes, I suffer at times, whine and complain, but my attitude of never giving up, persists.

There is a space inside me that will never give up, that will suffer with a good attitude and all our effort even without results.




Winning does not depend on me healing, it depends on me not giving up in the face of my struggles.




In the beginning of my struggles, when things got bad, I always increased my effort. My jock mentality knew trauma was the enemy and weakness was the last thing needed.

We have to find that space in our heart, that holds firm when things feel hopeless. We have to define our goals and attitude.

PTSD can humble us to our core, scare the hell out of us with what we fear most. Can you keep a good attitude and increase effort when things are bleak?

Trauma fear arrives as the scariest space we encounter, reinforced with our fight or flight mechanism dumping cortisol and adrenaline into the blood stream.

Our courage is connected to our attitude.

If we are afraid, Attitude suffers.

We heal by heading directly towards our trauma.

How many PTSD sufferers head towards their trauma?

That’s how we heal.

Avoidance powers PTSD.

I avoided at all costs in the beginning.

I learned the hard way how to heal by making every mistake.

Learn from my path, my experience, take action.

Meditation heads directly at our trauma.



PTSD: giving up is the worst decision

Pixabay: mohamed_hassan



15 years ago when my childhood abuse exploded, I had no idea how life was going to change.

You would of found a different person entirely, depending on the condition of my PTSD.

At my lowest, nervous system completely upside down, shaking uncontrollably at times, life was harsh.

PTSD had clearly won at my lowest. I got lost trying to think my way out. It made things worse, I felt helpless to impact it.

Depends on when we decide to give up. That will decide who wins.

This is when willpower is needed most.

Willpower allowed me to keep trying, keep taking action, even if nothing changed.

I had come to a place where improving may never happen.

Do I give up?

Your dad will win, came a voice from deep inside.

My fathers abuse developed my willpower as a kid.

Ironic that this willpower is what helped heal me.

Our paths and abuse are specific to us, but trauma is stored the same way.

I was shocked how humble then vulnerable I had to be to heal.

That healing of our inner world is both terrifying and soothing at times.

Even if I do not heal, my effort will not wane.

Our soul, core, true self needs to know that level of commitment.



PTSD takes one of two paths



From what I know and have read, after a traumatic event, one of three things will happen.

Some will not get PTSD, in fact there is a low percentage of people who will not develop PTSD.

Some will develop PTSD within a couple of months or immediately.

If we are going to develop PTSD, being aware of it immediately gives us a chance to heal the quickest.

Then there are people like me, who develop PTSD decades later. A crisis later in life along with getting older, weaker, exposes long buried terror. My trauma kind of fermented subconsciously.

It impacts our behavior without us knowing its presence.

For me, I knew something was different, wrong, damaged about me. It was always a mystery, I had some symptoms but never knew the cause.

So we limp along through life, we have never known anything different since childhood.

My two biggest traumas were different. My dad was nuts, a violent narcissist, I was always aware something was wrong.

This other trauma was repressed into memory, completely out of consciousness for 50 years. I do not understand how. It was shocking when it exploded.

How do you deal with trauma that is 50 years old?

The PTSD emotions are that of a 19 year old, strong, almost overpowering for a 69 year old guy.

Trauma is stored at the time it happens with all the attached emotions.

Our minds try to change the event or our reaction to the trauma. How can it feel so real?

It presents itself as near life and death.

It is irrational, cognitively impossible, but PTSD has special power until we integrate it.

I have not found a path to healing without pain, turbulence and suffering.

There is no way around our trauma. No easy solutions.

Each of us must face our trauma head on if we want relief.

This is why so few heal from serious prolonged abuse.




Rejoice: I do not know the word!



Looking for answers from others with childhood trauma.

Do you rejoice out loud in public? Do you feel safe enough, sober, to let go with unbridled happiness, laughter, care free exuberance?

There is something in me that stays vigilant, unconsciously at all times. I have never lost that fear from childhood rejection, criticism and abuse. It lives without my input.

That means with all my work, my core feels it is at risk.

Potentially I can be humiliated like childhood and especially college at any moment.

There is great panic, anxiety, humiliation and fear around these thoughts.

Common sense says this is crazy and irrational. PTSD does not care.

But PTSD is irrational, the past becomes the present, old damage comes alive.

Do you guys/gals feel safe in public? Are there any concerns, worries flowing?

Can you let go totally around people?

Do You feel danger around you?

When my ptsd was at its worst, I could not leave my house.

An invisible prison was erected around immense fear.


I see normal people rejoice all the time, effortlessly letting go without any fear showing.

How can they do that?

What does your landscape look like?



I am one of the lucky ones. I can resist and take action

“We need to live with less complaints and more gratitude.” Pinterest



When PTSD is active, life changes, thought patterns simplify.

The habitual traumatic event is the only movie playing. Over and over the torment haunts us.

How do we handle this unfair life?

What do we do for attitude, effort, and hope?

For me, I know I am luckier than most with childhood PTSD. I have tools and willpower.

Most childhood abuse (C-PTSD) ends in addiction, prostitution, aberrant behavior, disease, shorter life span and suffering.

Most severely abused kids are incapable of taking action, facing their fears (abuse) or improving.

Venture on to the PTSD discussion boards and witness the flailing and suffering . The opposite of healing is going on, victimhood is celebrated in such a public dysfunctional way.

It is extremely sad.

22 vets have committed suicide everyday for last three years, while PTSD surges beyond epidemic rates.

Think of the massive amount of PTSD that grips those living in the war zones our soldier have fought in.

I am lucky. If you follow this blog, I think you are lucky because your looking to heal.

Searching still, you have not given up.

We have the willpower and courage to look for healing and look to take action.

I know happiness and trauma are inside me.

Everyday I connect to that inner guide and search for improvement, a better life.

I can resist with every molecule in my body, that along with not giving up has carved a small space that I live inside.



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