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Can Infants Get Ptsd?

Discussion in 'Discussion' started by TK421, Jan 28, 2012.

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  1. TK421

    TK421 New Member

    I'm having a hard time understanding the criteria of PTSD as it pertains to Memory with an infant. If an infant experiences pain and terror shortly after birth to a few months old, is it possible for them to develop PTSD from that? I was told you have to be able to form memories in order to meet the criteria of PTSD, but would infants be able to form the type of memory needed to develop PTSD and re-experience the trauma in some way? Also, if it can't be PTSD, can they be traumatized in other ways? Thanks.
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  3. sea

    sea I'm a VIP

    No, but they can develop attachment disorders depending upon the origin of their fears and the consistency of their caregiving. Attachment disorders are the only psychiatric disorders that you can diagnose infants with. Infants can't develop PTSD because PTSD is a disorder of memory-circuit interruption and re-looping, re-triggering, re-experiencing, etc. The mechanisms involved in PTSD are too complicated for an infant brain to even go through. Which is why you can't have PTSD as an adult from events sustained before the age of at least a year old, because until that time, you can't store memories that make any sense.
    NIKI and Ayesha like this.
  4. anthony

    anthony Master of none!

    Only preschool and upwards, for the exact points above based on brain development.


    After the age mentioned in link, its then the normal PTSD diagnosis.
    simplekindofgirl likes this.
  5. itsKismet

    itsKismet I'm a VIP
    Premium Member

    Not arguing the PTSD/infant thing, however...

    There is evidence that infants can "remember" in other ways. Not conscious memories that are required for PTSD, rather "body" memories. (The mind may not remember, but the body never forgets.) This was introduced to me during my intensive trauma program a few months ago and while I don't understand all the details of it, it makes sense to me. (I had a traumatic birth and was an extremely fussy baby...conjecture that this was the issue, but my sexual trauma wasn't until years later, and my doctors found nothing else wrong with me).
    Froggie and sea like this.
  6. sea

    sea I'm a VIP

    I think this may have some basis in neurology as if you look at the dynamics of fear and trauma on the mind it reaches the base part of the brain which is the first part to develop, the brain stem. And in infants this is basically all they have to work on. So the stress chemicals that come with fear you know how fear manifests in the body, we store fear in our bodies.

    It's why babies can have attachment issues, because they don't get what they need and they become scared and over time that develops into their consciousness but the fear was always there first. Even if a child was mistreated before the age of six months and then given to a nice family for the rest of their life, and doesn't have any memories of being mistreated, they can still have attachment issues because their brain has been exposed to that fear that still lives there.

    I think that's why it's possible for people to be stuff like psychopaths and sociopaths or have personality disorders even while having a "decent life", ykwim? There's obviously something wrong with them, but maybe it happened so early and got stored so messed up and they have no memory of it that it's like they were just born like that. I really don't think, aside from psychopathy (which is linked to brain damage - which people can be born with), that people are "born" abusive or f*cked up.

    Even with personality disorders and shit, it isn't inevitable that there's some "PD Gene" that causes it. It's messed up by what your brain stores before you can even form cognition. But as for having PTSD, it's impossible. PTSD is a disorder of memory inherently, and infants can't store memories up to a certain age. But keep in mind there are quite a few disorders that look like PTSD from the outside, including attachment disorders.

    (Obviously I'm not questioning anyone's diagnosis, but if someone says they have PTSD "From a traumatic birth" - like that is their primary trauma, that's just not possible. You can have issues from it, but not PTSD specifically.) But I definitely agree that there are ways that infants store experiences that affect the outcome of their psychological profile even if they can't actually recall the events that lead up to it.
  7. itsKismet

    itsKismet I'm a VIP
    Premium Member

    Oh, I didn't mean to imply that a traumatic birth can give someone PTSD, or that I've ever heard of this possibility. Rather, that traumatic events at such a young age can still have an effect even though the memories may not be processed or stored the same way. Sorry if I was unclear!
    sea likes this.
  8. TK421

    TK421 New Member

    Now, the reason why I asked. Do you think it's possible infants can get these attachment disorders from circumcision? There have been tests of their blood cortisol levels before and after procedures that show a significant rise. There have also been tests that show a lower pain tolerance during vaccinations of circumcised boys vs. intact boys. There also must be post-op recovery pain as well from the wound, but I don't know how much pain that would be, or if it would be continual enough to cause an attachment disorder since it takes about a week to heal. I'm sure it's possible it can disrupt breastfeeding and bonding in some too since it's done at such an early age.
  9. sea

    sea I'm a VIP

    The only way I can answer this is with my opinion because I honestly don't know. I googled it but did not come up with anything at all. But in my opinion, circumcision is definitely grounds to be traumatic, definitely. I have always been 100% against it for that reason. (Actually, I can rant about it pretty in depth truly. It's absolutely baseless.) Honestly, if we're applying this to circumcision, I'm not really sure how to look at it only because it is so common.

    As a grounds for trauma - the procedure itself is pointless, cruel and agonizing. It does a lot of physical damage, leaves permanent scarring, can actually visibly cause deformities, it reduces sensation, it causes an extreme amount of pain to the infant as infants are typically not sedated for the procedure and this pain can last for weeks depending on the way the infant is circumcised. If any adult were circumcised against their will I would absolutely say that it would be grounds for trauma, absolutely. But this is not really about the validity of circumcision as a trauma but so much whether or not a human infant at such a young age would internalize that trauma enough to be significantly effected by it later than life.

    At the same time, I would think that if a person were to be significantly affected mentally by circumcision that they would have had to have been predisposed initially to Anxiety or stress - the reason I say this being that circumcision is so extremely prevalent and it does not consistently cause issues (it is, however, linked with many issues.) Even with PTSD, regular traumatic events are usually dealt with in a way that results in a person not developing PTSD. PTSD is not "A person experiences trauma and then inevitably gets PTSD." The same goes for PDs and ADs. Just because you've experienced something traumatic, does not inherently mean you will have a problem. So - what that means - is that if you do have a problem, you've already been predisposed to having that problem in some way.

    We still don't know why some people get PTSD or PD or AD and some people don't. Soldiers who serve together in the same Combat situations, one will come back PTSD the other will come back fine, we don't know why that is. PTSD is actually much rarer than people think it is, because nowadays we look at any traumatic event and think PTSD.

    So, in my opinion (not being a doctor or any degree of Expert), if you were neurologically predisposed to mental illness or to stress or to anxiety or whatever is wrong that would cause you to manifest these issues in the wake of trauma, circumcision could definitely count as a traumatic experience. And in men, circumcision is definitely linked to increased anxiety.

    Take a look at some of these:
  10. anthony

    anthony Master of none!

    I think it would be near impossible to actually pinpoint getting circumcised as a child, to being a traumatic event in adulthood years. Getting a needle can be traumatic, but that is not "abnormally" traumatic that relates to PTSD diagnosis. Being circumcised would be considered a "normal" part of life, just like going to get your immunisation needles.

    A female getting her pap-smear every year is "traumatic" by definition, but within the "normal" scope of expected traumatic events within life.
  11. sea

    sea I'm a VIP

    Absolutely disagree. The two experiences are not even comparable. A pap smear is not comparable to circumcision either. Circumcision has no medical purpose and genital mutilation by every definition of the word.

    It is absolutely abnormally traumatic to cut out parts of an infant male's penis for no reason, without anaesthesia. It is normal to have a pap smear or get immunizations - these are prophylactic measures. Circumcision is just asinine and damaging from a psychological and medical standpoint. Nor can it be appropriately explained by anyone, ever, what prophylactic capacity circumcision has.

    However, as for being abnormally traumatic enough to cause PTSD - I would agree, just because it happens too early for an infant to remember it, as was defined above. It is, however, certainly an abnormal event, and certainly a traumatic event.

    It isn't defined as a normal, expected "trauma" - as part of life, because an infant is not intelligent enough to understand what is "normal" or what isn't. All the infant knows is that it hurts beyond tolerance. It's the equivalent of repeatedly punching a baby in the face over and over (obviously the injury is not equivalent, but the pain factor, and the "wow, that is really not acceptable" factor is certainly).

    It's all pain to an infant, they can't conceptualize anything else. So, realistically, if pain constitutes trauma, circumcision is traumatizing. (And, keeping in mind, the pain from an immunization or the pain from a pap smear is nowhere near the pain infants experience during circumcision.)

    It wouldn't cause PTSD, because it is impossible to get PTSD if you can't form memories of the event neurologically, but if you as an infant were predisposed to developing anxiety from pain and trauma, circumcision could definitely fall in that stressor category.
  12. anthony

    anthony Master of none!

    You are confusing your individual beliefs with medicine Sea. Because you don't believe in it, does not mean it's wrong, or traumatic. Some cultures don't have it, some do. If you go down that road, then you may as well toss in religious belief or not religious belief, which is right? Black or white skin? And the list goes on...

    That is heading down a racist view of individualistic beliefs... very dangerous compared with what is classified as medically abnormally traumatic.

    There is also no empirical data to substantiate genetics in PTSD. There are some elements to genetics, yet even in identical twins, those elements typically only amount to 80% genetic attributes, compared to non-identical twins, around 40% genetic attributes, let alone siblings goes even lower again with genetic similarities.
  13. sea

    sea I'm a VIP

    You have to be kidding me. I'm racist because ... I can't even begin. I'm just going to point out some of this from my perspective only to address Anthony's point, keeping in mind that it really does no longer have anything to do with the thread: trauma&oq=circumcision trauma&aq=f&aqi=&aql=&gs_sm=e&gs_upl=173l199l0l542l2l2l0l0l0l0l0l0ll0l0

    Circumcision can directly and indirectly cause: aesthetic damage, phimosis, hairy shaft, wound dehiscence, de-gloving, haemorrhage, meatal stenosis, meatal ulcer, urethrocutaneous fistula, infection, including MRSA, neuroma, blockage of the urethra, buried penis, penoscrotal webbing, deformity, oxygen deprivation clamp injuries, plastibell injuries, loss of glans, ablation (removal) of the penis, scarring, and decreased sensation.

    It is genital mutilation. There are cultures in Africa that view it as culturally appropriate to slice off a woman's clitoris. That is genital mutilation too. Only we feel it is "true" mutilation. As opposed to .........? People think FGM is abnormally traumatic. Well, it's culturally accepted. It's culturally accepted here to perform circumcisions despite their being linked to more medical harm than medical good. (And again, this has nothing to do with beliefs or opinions or religions or whatever.) Spare me the whole "wah wah it's not even remotely the same" crap - I'm not stupid, I know that. But that doesn't mean that is not what circumcision is.

    I think you've just exploded my brain.

    It's a medical fact that circumcision is painful and pointless. Absolute medical fact. That has nothing to do with my beliefs at all. There is absolutely no medical reason to circumcise a healthy, in-tact, functional male infant. (I see you confusing that with me saying "There is no cultural/religious reason" or "There is no reason ever, period.") It causes extreme pain and it can lead to a lot of complications. It's medical fact that circumcision decreases sensitivity and causes scarring (which is physical damage).

    I'm honestly not even interested in bringing my personal opinions on the subject into the matter, but the idea that circumcision is not "abnormally traumatic" to an infant, who knows nothing aside from the fact that they are in an extreme amount of pain, is what I felt was pretty ridiculous. It's got absolutely nothing to do with my personal opinions that circumcision is painful to a traumatic extent.

    So, keeping in mind what I just said above, without throwing words like "Racist" at me, lol, PAIN = TRAUMA to an infant. An infant isn't smart enough to intellectualize anything else, So, keeping in with the actual topic of the OP's question, is circumcision painful? YES. So could that, if he were predisposed, lead to issues if he interpreted that as trauma? Yes.
  14. sea

    sea I'm a VIP

    And for the record, I did not state circumcision was wrong. I in fact stated nothing about whether or not I agree or disagree with people circumcising for cultural reasons, and thus you have absolutely no way of knowing whether or not I think it's ethical.

    I said I am against it because of the fact that it is a traumatic experience for the infant. That has nothing to do with whether or not it is objectively culturally wrong. I don't have the right to suggest that someone's religious beliefs are incorrect. Thus, I don't bring personal religious beliefs into it at all.

    I stated it was medically pointless and causes physiological damage - as well as causing enough pain to adequately be classified as traumatic to the infant experiencing it. I also stated it was genital mutilation. None of those statements approach whether or not I feel it is wrong. They are simply factual statements. I call it what it is, which has nothing to do with ethical judgment.
  15. anthony

    anthony Master of none!

    This is what I expected... you read "racist", applied it to yourself, then went of on a tangent with it and posted more on medical information.

    You are now in religious beliefs, because that is what circumcision has pretty much always been about. A dangerous topic IMHO.

    If I google breaking up from a relationship, I will also find how its "traumatic" and creates all sorts of problems, still has no relevance to PTSD or the traumatic nature of it.

    Please stop with the individualistic beliefs... I am not disputing medicine, I am stating a simple aspect of what is, and what is not, considered "abnormally traumatic" by definition for PTSD, thus, being circumcised is not "abnormally traumatic" by definition. I can also go to anti-immunisation websites where they will tell me, giving an infant a needle is abnormally traumatic and predisposing the child to later anxiety and Depression. Also complete nonsense about the severity they depict, though it would be impossible to measure whether giving a child needles in infancy does, or does not, lead to later anxiety or depressive issues in combination with further life factors, as there is no empirical data to not support it either.

    Societies views have shifted today on circumcision, that is all. Flares came back as well... who would have thought!!!
  16. sea

    sea I'm a VIP

    Which I agree with. My point was not about whether or not it was an event that could cause PTSD. My point was not about whether circumcision was wrong. As it was already explained several times over, it is biologically impossible to get PTSD from infantile circumcision.

    My point, was basically, that circumcision causes pain. A point I've made over and over and over again. Any person who disputes this fact is a moron. That isn't an individualistic belief, it is fact.

    My point was that, if you are looking at experiences that cause pain to indicate a measure of what could be considered "traumatic" (and by an infant's standards, that is the measure), circumcision fits into that definition.

    In fact, if you look at my first post, I openly question whether or not even that degree of pain would be enough to cause issues later in life, and then openly stated that it was my opinion (because again, as you've said, no one can prove it) that it could, if one were to ascribe to the belief that traumatic experiences (which only mean "PAINFUL experiences" in this context).

    My other point was disputing your original statement that circumcision is as "normal" as an immunization or a pap smear. Which, to an infant, it is not. You receive immunizations and pap smears later in life, where you are aware of their normalcy and their purpose. I then went on in that vein to say that circumcision does not serve a medical purpose the same way that a pap smear or an immunization does, which inherently makes it different.

    I am not "in" religious beliefs. Nowhere did I mention religion. You are bringing religious beliefs "in" to the discussion because of your belief that circumcision is inherently about religion.
    anthony likes this.
  17. anthony

    anthony Master of none!

    Hey Sea,

    Circumcision is actually about religion. That is where circumcision originated, and you may want to do some research on that yourself to clarify your stance on such, when discussing it in the future, as it will come back to what it exists for:

    You cannot discuss circumcision in any manner outside of its intended purpose, being religious... as that is its only reason.

    Those who do it because others did it, type debate, are actually following religious beliefs through their own stupidity, if they didn't know why it was done in the first place.

    To my age group and older, it is considered normal. It is those of my age group that have shifted to what is done to their children vs. what was done to them, thus normalcy is again individualistic.

    When the children growing up today become mature, they will cite what you state, being circumcision is not a normal part of society any further. Those in my generation and older, it is very much a normal part of life, with the majority of males being circumcised the older the generations went, as religious values deepened in older generations.

    Coming back to its inception again, religion; religious beliefs are dwindling across the world, combined with medical science, thus slowly circumcision will become a thing of the past as "normal," in future generations... as is religion slowing degrading gracefully from society with every new generation. There are less and less churches, more are closing up and becoming broke, some are reinventing themselves to try and stand with modern society.

    Circumcision and religion go hand in hand though I'm afraid... fact. Hence my reluctance to really discuss it, as people quickly become disjointed and confused due to personal views and beliefs.

    Have this conversation in a Muslim country and you will get a vastly different response again, even today...
    sea likes this.
  18. sea

    sea I'm a VIP

    That statement doesn't make sense. Of course you can discuss it in a context outside of religion. It is a medical procedure to remove the foreskin. See, I'm discussing it. I've discussed it outside a religious context the entire time I've spoken - being that I've been discussing it as a medical procedure that is painful and potentially traumatic. Which has nothing to do with why it's done, nor the debate around it. And, to be honest, it's done by a shitload of people just because, like yourself, their doctors view it as a normal practice. Half the people who get circumcised in North America don't even know the purpose of circumcision in a religious context. Which just strikes me as ridiculous, really.

    I've been discussing it in a religiously neutral context the entire time.

    From my perspective it's a matter of belief and opinion, when it comes to discussing circumcision, as it doesn't have a medical purpose beyond relieving very specific issues later in life. Which is why it's separate from a procedure in medicine designed to be prophylactic or curative, and which is why the debate on circumcision is mostly always moral/ethical. However, I'm not debating circumcision. The only thing I debated regarding circumcision was that it is not abnormal - because to an infant, everything is abnormal.

    In summary, all I was trying to state beyond any ethical or moral challenge is that if a person believes that pain can quantify trauma in infancy, they would have to acknowledge that circumcision is included in that definition. Which can potentially validate the OP's initial statement.

    Is it right or wrong? It can't be right or wrong because the reasons why people choose to do it are subjective to their individual cultures and religions. Having been in a Muslim country for a good long time, this was impressed upon me imperatively just to be able to function diplomatically. People have the right to believe whatever they like, that is the joy of human nature. It's like asking whether or not violence, or dressing provocatively is right or wrong. It's always going to be subjective.

    If the answer can change between individuals, then it's subjective. I was naming facts, and when I wasn't naming facts, I was making it perfectly clear that it was my opinion. My opinion which did not have to do with religious or cultural indications, but was based on the religiously neutral medical component. I think it is unnecessary, yep. I have rants about it, Yep. From a medical perspective, I sure do.

    It only means that I, a person who is not religious and therefore does not comprehend the religious aspect, think it is medically unnecessary and potentially harmful. Because I am not religious, I can't understand that the benefits outweigh the harm. Thus, I am against it, for precisely the reasons I outlined above: Because it is constitutes trauma that I cannot understand is justified from my individual non-religious point of view. Which does not mean that religion is unjustified, just because I can't comprehend it. Being spiritual, I understand how important my own beliefs are to me.

    Does that mean it is unnecessary or wrong, just because I think so? No. People go through ritual trauma on a daily basis within their own cultures for their own reasons, and truthfully - circumcision is no different from that. And any mental issues that arise as the result of circumcision are more accurately attributed to neurological predisposition for mental illness/anxiety/etc that was there beforehand anyway.

    Despite what people/you may believe about me being closed minded, I am perfectly aware that just because I believe something, does not make it fact. I can also acknowledge that I don't make this clear very well. But I think it goes without saying that by now, it should be clear, as I've made it obvious tenfold. There are a lot of people the world over who genuinely believe that they must have their children circumcised or else they will fail a religious expectation and that failure is haunting, and crushing to them, and potentially to their children who may be ingrained with the same religious beliefs later in life.

    Beliefs are important, we all need them, so I don't believe I have a right to tell people what is right or wrong, only what I feel and think and believe - which should be able to exist independently of someone else's thoughts and beliefs.
  19. TK421

    TK421 New Member

    According to my understanding of the history, male circumcision/genital modification has sprung up independently of religion in some cultures. Historical evidence of foreskin removal in ancient Egypt is the earliest evidence we have of circumcision, and I don't think that's been connected to religion at all. Penile subincision is another form of male genital modification that happens independently of religion or religious influence. So those are a couple of examples.

    I find it odd that it's being assumed that circumcision is exclusively a religious practice by Anthony, because while the largest circumcising group in the world are Muslims, it's mostly done for secular cultural reasons outside of that. In English-speaking countries (US, England, Canada, Australia, New Zealand), the routine practice of circumcision started out as a Victorian fad in the mid to late 1800's, which kind of converged with various unsubstantiated claims of health benefits roaming around that time, and it has since either died out or very nearly died out in all those countries with the exception of the good 'ole US of A, although Canada is admittedly kind of teetering.

    People commonly associate circumcision exclusively with Judaism, but Jews are only 2% of the US population and most of them get it done in hospitals, not as a ritual Brit Milah as is required in the Jewish faith. So I say it's mostly a secular cultural practice nowadays, outside of Muslim countries. So while the Victorian origin of it in English speaking countries may have been influenced by the Jewish religious practice of circumcision (since it's roughly the same procedure), it became a cultural practice that was pretty much divorced of religious reasons and ritual after that. The most common reasons people in the US give for doing it are cosmetic ("so he looks like dad", "so he'll look like the other kids in the locker room", "it looks better") and hygiene ("it's cleaner"). Yeah, religion is a big part of its origins, no doubt, but there just isn't a lot of religious context surrounding it anymore. Even in Islam, it's not a core tenet like it is in Orthodox Judaism, and it's not even mentioned in the Quran, but rather in the Hadith. As far as Christians go theologically, they're under absolutely no obligation to circumcise, I think the new testament even says Gentiles should not perform the practice.

    As far as routine infant circumcision goes, the only countries that still perform it at at least a 50% rate are the US and Israel. In Muslim countries, South Korea (which originated solely from the influence of the US Military), and certain Pacific islands, it's performed from childhood to adolescence.
  20. sea

    sea I'm a VIP

    Yeah, in the Qur'an there's no obligation for circumcision at all. It's not mentioned. It is mentioned under what would be hadith, which is relating to that of Mohammed - and Islam is pretty much the largest widespread culture to practice circumcision (khitan - purification) to date even though it's not part of the Qur'an. The reasoning for this is because according to some interpretations of hadith (but not all), Mohammed was born without a foreskin. However, there are also alternate versions of hadith which completely omit khitan as a religious practice. If you go by Quranists, khitan makes no logical sense (because it isn't in the Qur'an) and isn't part of the fitra (nature).
    Ayesha likes this.
  21. Jet

    Jet Well-Known Member

    Not an expert on circumcision by any stretch of the imagination but I can tell u I would never have another child circumcised unless it was (for some reason I can't fathom) absolutely medically necessary.

    My son's dad and I were 18 when he was born and the doctor's really pushed the circumcision issue. Since I was female and had no idea what it was like to have a penis in the first place I left the decision up to his dad and he said yes.

    When they brought him back he was perfectly fine...sleeping like a little angel. Maybe I should have left it at that but since it was a teaching hospital and they videotaped stuff like that I asked to see the tape. Big, big, big mistake...

    As a female who has had many pelvic exams and immunizations I can honestly say that there is no comparison. None whatsoever.... Pelvic exams and the like are uncomfortable and embarrassing but they are not a surgical procedure (being done on a delicate part of the body) being done without one is strapped to a board (so they can't move) while this is being done.

    The foreskin is not meant to be an infant it is firmly attached to the head of the penis. It's not like trimming your fingernails...they don't just give a little snip and it's gone.

    Being a routine, commonly done procedure does not mean that it is routine...the only reason it is not abnormally traumatizing is because it is an infant...if a toddler/child/adult were to be circumcised in the same manner it most definitely would be.

    Also...not to long ago I read about a guy (idiot) who forcibly retracted his infant son's foreskin to clean under it. He was charged with child Abuse (even tho his intent was not to harm the child). I am curious as to what the difference is in the long run.
  22. TK421

    TK421 New Member

    "Also...not to long ago I read about a guy (idiot) who forcibly retracted his infant son's foreskin to clean under it. He was charged with child abuse (even tho his intent was not to harm the child). I am curious as to what the difference is in the long run."

    Did this happen in the US? I have never heard of parents being charged for forcible retraction.

    It's hard to blame parents in the US for doing this, the level of ignorance about the intact penis is off the charts, even in the medical community.
    BloomInWinter likes this.
  23. bitzer

    bitzer Active Member

    I'm a psychotherapist and I specialise in infant PTSD. There is a common misconception that infants can't get PTSD because the part of the brain that manages explicit memories, the Hippocampus, is not present at birth.

    However, that is not the whole story. We actually have two types of memory, implicit and explict. The part of the brain that manages implicit memory, the Amygdala, is present at birth.

    We PTSD sufferers know implicit memory as the knee-jerk response you get to rejection, feeling controlled, and/or confrontation. There's no explicit memory attached and there's no conscious control, you just get the fight/flight response to the trigger.

    I treat people with infant PTSD day-in-day-out. There's a lot more of it about than the (explicit) PTSD statistics would lead you to believe.
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  24. Nadia

    Nadia Wish I could say all the things that I should say

    This is really interesting Bitzer.... I would really appreciate more information about that. I have been getting flashes or flashbacks that do not seem to have any particular memory to them. It feels like a bolt of energy that just jolts through my body. And I just jump and get a shock. Do you think this has to do with implicit memories?
  25. Beegowl

    Beegowl New Member

    I had a recurring nightmare from my earliest memory through mid-adolescence.

    The dream, identical each time, left me trembling and screaming for my mother. I was lucky enough to have my parents throughout my childhood, as did most people in my generation.

    My parents, rural Kansans, were smart but unsophisticated and unaware of help for such an unidentifiable problem. My recurring dream and the terror it engendered left them frustrated and concerned. When they asked me to describe the dream I could not except to say that I saw something dancing on light.

    As an adult years later after I overcame an alcohol addiction, I was doing some self-discovery based on Alice Miller's writing. My mother described an incident in my infancy that she regretted. One night, not long after I was born, she left me alone in the kitchen in my crib. She said I cried forever and it was all she could do to let me cry without going to me but that the doctor told her that ignoring the crying wasn't bad and it would help extinguish crying behavior.

    I had this experience before I could speak, thus I could not describe it. The lights I saw were moonlit shadows on the wall above my crib from the swaying, bouncing trees blowing in the Kansas wind. The dream was one of terror caused by both the mysterious and horrifying dancing lights on the wall and the fact that my mother would not come in answer to my cries of fear.

    My recurring dream was always preceded by an aura that seemed like a softness that would surround me. I believe that this was the memory of the blanket my mother covered me with before she left the room. I was quite anxious and fearful during my childhood, though it wasn't totally crippling.

    This single incident in a life that was not abusive or cruel during my childhood, with loving parents and many good memories, had a lifelong impact. So, infants, in my experience, can develop PTSD.
  26. itsKismet

    itsKismet I'm a VIP
    Premium Member

    I realize you haven't been on the forum, but as the diagnostic criteria stands, I fail to see exactly how an infant can be diagnosed with PTSD as diagnosis depends on sufferer confirmation of certain symptoms.

    Are you saying you are treating older people who were traumatized as infants? This is very different as there is a thing as delayed-onset PTSD.
    cherryblossom likes this.
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  9. infznt ptsd hospitalisatikn,
  10. are babies born with ptsd,
  11. are you born with PTSD ,
  12. newborn PTSD,
  13. do babies get pstd from birth,
  14. infant circumcision causes ptsd,
  15. do infants get birth trauma