Army Sgt. Danielle Breitbard and her father, Barry, share a moment during the pre-deployment Yellow Ribbon event in Knoxville, Tenn. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Amanda Boersma)
For most people, tapping into emotions and expressing them doesn’t involve much struggle. But individuals coping with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or depression may find such a task very hard to do. Feeling emotionally numb or disconnected from those close to you or life in general, is a common symptom of both psychological health conditions. If you’re feeling emotional numbness, there are actions you can take to improve your emotional well-being and your psychological health too.
This blog post comes from Dr. Alex Patterson, clinical psychologist with National Center for Telehealth and Technology, a DCoE center. Patterson writes for the afterdeployment.dcoe.mil blog, and in his post, “Jumper Cables,” provides tips to help a person jumpstart themselves emotionally.
“Why can’t I feel anymore? I just want to feel something strongly, either good or bad … happy or sad.” —Veteran with PTSD
When people think of depression they often think of sadness. When people think of PTSD they often think of anxiety or anger. In other words, people tend to associate these behavioral health issues with strong, negative emotions. What about emotional numbness? Did you know that emotional numbness is another painful symptom common in both depression and PTSD? Emotional numbness means we want to feel our emotions, but can’t.