Examples Of PTSD In The Civil War

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Arianna Santana
Ms. Azouz
Period 1 U.S. History
5 December 2016
PTSD in the Civil War PTSD is the acronym for post traumatic stress syndrome which is a mental illness that most commonly found in war veterans or generally those who experience a traumatic event. PTSD causes anxiety, nightmares, flashbacks of the traumatic event the person experienced, and it can leave lasting emotional trauma on victims. The Civil War lasted five years from 1861 to 1865, over 600,000 soldiers died, and those soldiers who survived were left with the horrors of the war they had just experienced. By examining the lack of mental health research, accounts of PTSD in the Civil War, and the brutal images of war veterans witnessed, it is clear that PTSD was not recognized as an actual illness when it undoubtedly should have been. The primary and most important reason being is the lack of mental health research, which is the first point to analysis. …show more content…

Those who had mental illnesses were placed in institutions that were essentially like jails, and those patients were mistreated heavily, confined in small spaces, and were receiving harsh methods of treatment. The first account of the term PTSD being used is in 1980; one hundred and fifteen years after the Civil War. The Civil War was essentially the reason that mental health- especially in soldiers coming home from war- was finally being researched. Until PTSD was given its name in 1980, it was called shell shock- referring to the reaction to the explosion of artillery shells-, war neuroses, combat stress reaction, and battle fatigue ("History of Mental Health"). Overall, mental health was not thoroughly researched until post Civil War when soldiers that came home showed -what will be known as PTSD-

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