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50+ PTSD Statistics & Facts: How Common Is PTSD?

Top 20 PTSD Statistics

If you're wondering how common PTSD is, how many people have PTSD, or you're just looking for PTSD statistics, you've come to the right place.

  • Approximately 7-8% of the population will experience PTSD during their lifetime. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • Women are twice as likely to develop PTSD compared to men. (National Center for PTSD)
  • Among military personnel who served in combat, about 11-20% will experience PTSD. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • The prevalence of PTSD among combat veterans from the Gulf War is estimated to be around 10%. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • About 27% of police officers experience symptoms of PTSD. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • For firefighters, the prevalence of PTSD is estimated to be around 7-37%. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • Individuals who have experienced previous trauma are at a higher risk of developing PTSD following a new traumatic event. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • About 33-50% of individuals who survive a mass shooting develop PTSD. (National Center for PTSD)
  • The prevalence of PTSD among refugees and asylum seekers can be as high as 40%. (National Institute of Health)
  • Up to 25% of individuals who survive a severe motor vehicle accident develop PTSD. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • PTSD prevalence among victims of sexual assault can range from 30-80%. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • Children who experience trauma have a lifetime prevalence of PTSD estimated at 15-43%. (National Child Traumatic Stress Network)
  • The prevalence of PTSD among military personnel who served in Iraq and Afghanistan is estimated to be around 11-20%. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • Around 70% of adults in the U.S. have experienced a traumatic event, with 20% developing PTSD as a result. (Sidran Institute)
  • Among combat veterans from the Vietnam War, approximately 30% have experienced PTSD during their lifetime. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • An estimated 1 out of 9 women will develop PTSD at some point in their lives. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • About 15% of firefighters have symptoms consistent with a diagnosis of PTSD. (National Fire Protection Association)
  • 80% of individuals with PTSD also suffer from at least one co-occurring mental health disorder. (Sidran Institute)
  • The risk of developing PTSD is higher in individuals who have a family history of anxiety or depression. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • Approximately 50% of people with PTSD do not seek treatment. (Sidran Institute)

How Common Is PTSD?

Around 7-8% of people will experience PTSD at some point in their lives.

Is PTSD More Common In Women Than Men?

Yes, women are twice as likely as men to develop PTSD.

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PTSD is a common mental health condition that affects people of all ages, genders, and backgrounds. According to the National Center for PTSD, approximately 7-8% of the US population will experience PTSD at some point in their lives, with women being twice as likely as men to develop the disorder.

Military veterans are also at an increased risk of developing PTSD, with up to 20% of veterans who served in Iraq or Afghanistan experiencing symptoms of the disorder.

  • Among children who have experienced traumatic events, boys are more likely to develop PTSD than girls. (American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry)
  • The average delay between experiencing a traumatic event and seeking professional help for PTSD is 12 years. (Sidran Institute)
  • Individuals with PTSD are at a higher risk of developing chronic pain conditions. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • The lifetime prevalence of PTSD among adults in the United States is approximately 6.1%. (National Comorbidity Survey Replication)
  • Individuals with PTSD are at a higher risk of developing substance use disorders. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • Among military personnel, the risk of developing PTSD increases with the number of deployments. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • Up to 50% of people who experience a traumatic brain injury (TBI) may develop PTSD. (Brain Injury Research Institute)
  • About 90% of rape victims experience symptoms of acute stress shortly after the assault. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • Approximately 46% of adolescents who have been exposed to a single traumatic event develop PTSD. (National Center for PTSD)
  • The prevalence of PTSD among law enforcement officers can be as high as 25%. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • The risk of developing PTSD after witnessing a traumatic event is higher if the event involves interpersonal violence. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • About 37% of combat veterans with PTSD also have a traumatic brain injury. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • Among veterans with PTSD, approximately 30% also suffer from major depressive disorder. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • Up to 30% of individuals who experience a traumatic event may develop acute stress disorder, which can progress to PTSD. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • PTSD prevalence among survivors of natural disasters can range from 5-65%. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • Approximately 52% of homeless veterans in the U.S. have PTSD. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • Among individuals diagnosed with PTSD, about 50-60% experience nightmares. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • Veterans who were exposed to Agent Orange during the Vietnam War have a higher risk of developing PTSD. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • The prevalence of PTSD is higher in low-income and disadvantaged populations. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • PTSD is often associated with a higher risk of cardiovascular disease and other physical health issues. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
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PTSD symptoms can vary from person to person, but they typically fall into four categories: intrusion, avoidance, negative changes in mood and thinking, and hyperarousal. Intrusion symptoms include flashbacks, nightmares, and intrusive thoughts about the traumatic event.

Avoidance symptoms include avoiding people, places, or things that may trigger memories of the traumatic event. Negative changes in mood and thinking can include feelings of guilt, shame, and hopelessness. Hyperarousal symptoms include being easily startled, feeling irritable or angry, and having difficulty sleeping.

  • Individuals with PTSD have an increased risk of suicide compared to the general population. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • The prevalence of PTSD among emergency medical service (EMS) personnel is estimated to be around 10-20%. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • Military sexual trauma (MST) is a significant risk factor for developing PTSD among female veterans. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • Among individuals who experience a traumatic event, those with a history of childhood trauma are more likely to develop PTSD. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • The risk of developing PTSD following a traumatic event is higher if the person has a history of mental health issues. (Sidran Institute)
  • Exposure to multiple types of trauma increases the risk of developing complex PTSD. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • Approximately 10% of first responders develop PTSD during their careers. (International Association of Fire Fighters)
  • The prevalence of PTSD among survivors of mass shootings can range from 28-34%. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • Around 25% of military personnel with PTSD also have a substance use disorder. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • Among individuals with PTSD, about 80% experience intrusive memories related to the traumatic event. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • The risk of developing PTSD following a traumatic event is higher in individuals who lack social support. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • Approximately 45% of individuals diagnosed with PTSD also have generalized anxiety disorder. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • PTSD is more prevalent among individuals who have experienced physical or sexual abuse during childhood. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • The lifetime prevalence of PTSD among survivors of domestic violence is approximately 31%. (U.S. National Library of Medicine)
  • Around 20% of military personnel who served in Iraq or Afghanistan have experienced a traumatic brain
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PTSD Prevalence By Age

  • Individuals aged 18-29: 14.4% prevalence of PTSD
  • Individuals aged 30-44: 6.5% prevalence of PTSD
  • Individuals aged 45-59: 5% prevalence of PTSD
  • Individuals aged 60 and older: 2.9% prevalence of PTSD
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PTSD Causes Statistics

  • Combat: 11-20% prevalence of PTSD
  • Sexual assault: 30-80% prevalence of PTSD
  • Physical assault: 23-39% prevalence of PTSD
  • Natural disasters: 4-39% prevalence of PTSD
  • Serious accidents: 16% prevalence of PTSD

Negative Effects from PTSD Statistics

  • Sleep disturbances (insomnia, nightmares): Up to 70-90% of individuals with PTSD experience sleep-related issues.
  • Avoidance behaviors: Around 50-60% of individuals with PTSD may engage in avoidance behaviors to evade triggers related to their trauma.
  • Hyperarousal: Approximately 60-80% of people with PTSD may experience heightened states of arousal, leading to increased anxiety and hypervigilance.
  • Flashbacks and intrusive memories: Up to 80% of individuals with PTSD may experience intrusive memories or flashbacks related to the traumatic event.
  • Negative mood and emotions: Many individuals with PTSD may experience persistent negative emotions, such as sadness, guilt, shame, or anger.
  • Impaired social relationships: Difficulties in interpersonal relationships and social isolation can be observed in approximately 50-60% of individuals with PTSD.
  • Depression: PTSD often co-occurs with depression, with around 30-40% of individuals experiencing comorbid depressive symptoms.
  • Substance use disorders: Roughly 20-30% of individuals with PTSD may develop co-occurring substance use disorders as a way to cope with their symptoms.
  • Occupational and educational impairment: PTSD can significantly impact a person's ability to function at work or school, affecting around 30-40% of individuals.
  • Physical health issues: Individuals with PTSD may have an increased risk of developing various physical health problems due to chronic stress, although the exact percentage varies.
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PTSD Statistics by Country

  • United States: The lifetime prevalence of PTSD among adults in the U.S. is approximately 6.1%. (National Comorbidity Survey Replication)
  • Iraq: Among military personnel who served in Iraq, the prevalence of PTSD is estimated to be around 11-20%. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • Afghanistan: The prevalence of PTSD among military personnel who served in Afghanistan is also estimated to be around 11-20%. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • Syria: Due to ongoing conflict and war, Syria is likely to have a high prevalence of PTSD, but specific statistics may be challenging to obtain accurately.
  • Vietnam: Among combat veterans from the Vietnam War, approximately 30% have experienced PTSD during their lifetime. (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • South Sudan: South Sudan has experienced prolonged conflict and humanitarian crises, leading to a significant risk of PTSD among its population, particularly in those who have experienced violence and displacement.
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC): The DRC has faced ongoing conflicts and widespread violence, resulting in a high risk of PTSD among its population.
  • Ukraine: Due to the conflict in eastern Ukraine, there is an increased risk of PTSD among civilians and military personnel.
  • Nepal: After the devastating earthquake in 2015, Nepal saw an increase in PTSD cases among survivors.
  • Haiti: Following the earthquake in 2010 and other natural disasters, Haiti experienced a rise in PTSD cases.
  • Australia: Among military personnel who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, the prevalence of PTSD is estimated to be around 8%. (Australian Centre for Posttraumatic Mental Health)
  • Canada: The lifetime prevalence of PTSD among adults in Canada is approximately 9.2%. (Journal of Traumatic Stress)
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Summary

PTSD is a serious and common mental health condition that affects millions of people each year. While the prevalence of PTSD is high, there are several treatment options available that can help individuals manage their symptoms. It is important to seek help if you or someone you know is experiencing symptoms of PTSD.

With the right treatment and support, individuals with PTSD can lead happy and fulfilling lives.

Sources:

https://barendspsychology.com/mental-disorders-causes-of-ptsd/

https://www.brightfuturesny.com/post/ptsd-statistics

https://facethefactsusa.org/facts/the-true-price-of-war-in-human-terms/

https://www.clearvuehealth.com/ptsdstats/

https://www.hillandponton.com/veterans-statistics/ptsd/

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