Do you have to have nightmares to be diagnosed with PTSD/CPTSD?

Friday

Moderator
Nope.

Nightmares are just 1 of 5 possible intrusion symptom

B. Presence of one (or more) of the following intrusion symptoms associated with the traumatic event(s), beginning after the traumatic event(s) occurred:
  1. Recurrent, involuntary, and intrusive distressing memories of the traumatic event(s) Note: In children older than 6 years, repetitive play may occur in which themes or aspects of the traumatic event(s) are expressed.
  2. Recurrent distressing dreams in which the content and/or affect of the dream are related to the traumatic event(s). Note:In children, there may be frightening dreams without recognizable content.
  3. Dissociative reactions (e.g., flashbacks) in which the individual feels or acts as if the traumatic event(s) were recurring. (Such reactions may occur on a continuum, with the most extreme expression being a complete loss of awareness of present surroundings.) Note: In children, trauma-specific reenactment may occur in play.
  4. Intense or prolonged psychological distress at exposure to internal or external cues that symbolize or resemble an aspect of the traumatic event(s).
  5. Marked physiological reactions to internal or external cues that symbolize or resemble an aspect of the traumatic event(s).

Criteria B

Criteria B1 is focused on intrusive symptoms. A key focus in this criterion is that the intrusion is involuntary. The emphasis is on recurrent memories of the event that usually include sensory, emotional, or physiological behavioral components.

Criteria B2, a common re-experiencing symptom is distressing dreams that replay the event, part thereof, or thematically related to major threats from the trauma.

Criteria B3, dissociative states can last hours or days, during which components of the event are relived and the individual behaves as if the event where occurring at that moment.

Criteria B4 and B5 are about triggers and your reactions to them. They could be psychological or externally cued, such as a windy days after a hurricane, seeing planes after surviving a crash or seeing someone who resembles your perpetrator.
 

Charbella

MyPTSD Pro
Do you have to have nightmares to be diagnosed with PTSD/CPTSD?
I was diagnosed about 20 years ago and I really didn’t ever have them, it was the one symptom we marked no to. Even now, I was re-diagnosed (I really hadn’t paid attention to the diagnosis back then, discarded it as untrue) a year ago and then I wasn’t having nightmares or at least nothing I was aware of. Recently I have been having “nightmares” but oddly they are during the day during semi-conscious naps.

@Friday is absolutely correct it is one of the cluster of symptoms.
 

gumshoe

Learning
I was diagnosed about 20 years ago and I really didn’t ever have them, it was the one symptom we marked no to. Even now, I was re-diagnosed (I really hadn’t paid attention to the diagnosis back then, discarded it as untrue) a year ago and then I wasn’t having nightmares or at least nothing I was aware of. Recently I have been having “nightmares” but oddly they are during the day during semi-conscious naps.

@Friday is absolutely correct it is one of the cluster of symptoms.
Are pervasive nightmares a criteria in deciding the extent of a VA disability award?
 

joeylittle

Administrator
Are pervasive nightmares a criteria in deciding the extent of a VA disability award?
@Freida - hope you don't mind, I'm tagging you b/c I believe you went through this process recently...

I wouldn't think the actual number of criteria met would affect a determination, but on the other hand, the VA is it's own beast...I'm curious too.
 

Charbella

MyPTSD Pro
Are pervasive nightmares a criteria in deciding the extent of a VA disability award?
Thanks @joeylittle I am glad your asking someone else. I don’t know, technically if the US had it I’d be diagnosed CPTSD, mine is from CSA. I wouldn’t imagine it to be so since the criteria is heavily influenced by the VA, I’d think they wouldn’t allow the other options if they weren’t viable ones.

Have you met with a VA psychiatrist?
 

Freida

MyPTSD Pro
Are pervasive nightmares a criteria in deciding the extent of a VA disability award?
Yes and no
If you have them it helps but if you don't it won't stop the claim from going thru. I never remembered my dreams, but I was notorious for jumping out of bed ready to fight (LOL, smacked hubby good a time or two) so we were able to use that. Plus I had horrible insomnia so they added that in there too.

This might help answer your question
VA Criteria
@Charbella thanks for this but....

@gumshoe nope nope nope LOL What they say on these forms and what happens in real life are sooooo different it will make you crazy trying to figure it out.

Example: I am 0% for a foot injury, 10% for medical issue, 40% for fibro and 70% for ptsd.
In va math that equals 80%.
But, I"m also considered totally and permanently disabled even though I didn't hit the 100% mark so they pay me at the 100% rate.

Best thing is to start writing down every possible symptom you have, no matter how odd or how small you think it is, because you will need that for the C&P exam when you first enter into the process.
 

gumshoe

Learning
Thanks @joeylittle I am glad your asking someone else. I don’t know, technically if the US had it I’d be diagnosed CPTSD, mine is from CSA. I wouldn’t imagine it to be so since the criteria is heavily influenced by the VA, I’d think they wouldn’t allow the other options if they weren’t viable ones.

Have you met with a VA psychiatrist?
Yes, initial stages of it
 
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