Increased Precautions We're Taking in Response to COVID-19
As updates on the impact of the coronavirus continue to be released, we want to take a moment to inform you of the heightened preventative measures we have put in place at Pacific Grove Hospital to keep our patients, their families, and our employees safe. All efforts are guided by and in adherence to the recommendations distributed by the CDC.

Please note that for the safety of our patients, their families, and our staff, on-site visitation is no longer allowed at Pacific Grove Hospital.

  • This restriction has been implemented in compliance with updated corporate and state regulations to further reduce the risks associated with COVID-19.
  • We are offering visitation through telehealth services so that our patients can remain connected to their loved ones.
  • Alternate methods of communication for other services are being vetted and may be offered when deemed clinically appropriate.

For specific information regarding these changes and limitations, please contact us directly.

CDC updates are consistently monitored to ensure that all guidance followed is based on the latest information released.

  • All staff has received infection prevention and control training.
  • Thorough disinfection and hygiene guidance has been provided.
  • Patient care supplies such as masks and hand sanitizer are being monitored and utilized.
  • Temperature and symptom screening protocols are in place for all patients and staff.
  • Social distancing strategies have been implemented to ensure that patients and staff maintain proper distance from one another at all times.
  • Cleaning service contracts have been reviewed for additional support.
  • Personal protective equipment items are routinely checked to ensure proper and secure storage.
  • CDC informational posters are on display to provide important reminders on proper infection prevention procedures.
  • We are in communication with our local health department to receive important community-specific updates.

The safety of our patients, their families, and our employees is our top priority, and we will remain steadfast in our efforts to reduce any risk associated with COVID-19.

The CDC has provided a list of easy tips that can help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and then immediately dispose of the tissue.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces that are frequently touched.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.

For detailed information on COVID-19, please visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

Signs and Symptoms of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder

Pacific Grove Hospital is a nationally recognized 68 bed acute psychiatric and chemical dependency treatment center offering inpatient & outpatient services for psychiatric illnesses, addictions & co-occurring disorders.

Understanding PTSD

Learn about PTSD

Most people feel frightened, anxious, sad, and disconnected following a traumatic experience. Other people find that their symptoms don’t disappear within a few days or months and go on to develop PTSD. Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a serious mental health disorder triggered by exposure to a terrifying event. PTSD symptoms may include flashbacks, nightmares, severe anxiety, and uncontrollable thoughts about the event.

Fear is the body’s natural reaction to danger and triggers the body to prepare to either defend itself or flee from the perceived threat. This fight-or-flight response is a healthy emotional and physical reaction designed to help protect an individual from harm. People with PTSD, however, have a damaged or changed fight-or-flight response, which can leave them feeling extremely frightened or stressed even after they’re no longer in danger.

PTSD can affect people at any age, however, not everyone who lives through a traumatic event will go on to develop PTSD. Post-traumatic stress disorder has a different developmental course for each person who experiences it. Some may notice symptoms in the days and weeks following the event while others do not develop symptoms for weeks, months, or even years after the event. While any situation that causes people to feel helpless or as if they’re in danger can lead to PTSD, the most common traumatic events include:

  • Plane crashes
  • Terrorist attacks
  • Sudden, unexpected death of a loved one
  • Rape/sexual assault
  • Kidnapping
  • Sexual or physical abuse
  • Child neglect
  • War
  • Natural disasters
  • Car accidents
  • Physical assault

With proper medication, support, and therapeutic interventions, most people are able to move on with their life.

Statistics

PTSD statistics

Each year, about 5.2 million adults in the United States struggle with PTSD, which represents only a fraction of those who have experienced a trauma. PTSD is more common in women; approximately 10% of women develop post-traumatic stress disorder at some time in their lives compared to 5% of men. About 7% to 8% of the population of the United States will develop PTSD at some point in their lifetime.

Causes and Risk Factors

Causes and risk factors for PTSD

The primary cause for PTSD is experiencing, witnessing, or learning about an event that causes intense fear, helplessness, and dread. However, researchers are not sure why some individuals develop this disorder while others do not. It’s thought that the development of post-traumatic stress disorder is caused by a variety of genetic, environmental, and physical factors working together. Some of the causes for PTSD may include:

Genetic: People who have first-degree relatives with anxiety disorders or other types of mental illness are at greater risk for developing PTSD after exposure to a particularly traumatic event.

Physical: Neuroimaging studies conducted on the brains of people who have PTSD have noted that there are marked differences in the structure of certain brain structures. Additionally, the neurotransmitter levels of dopamine and serotonin may be lower than in those who do not have an anxiety disorder.

Environmental: People who live in high-stress situations, such as in impoverished areas where violence is a part of daily life, may be at increased risk for developing PTSD after a traumatic event. Additionally, all of your life experiences such as the amount and severity of trauma one has experienced since childhood can have an impact.

Risk Factors:

  • Being female
  • Existence of other mental health problems
  • Lacking good support system
  • Being abused or neglected as a child
Signs and Symptoms

Signs and symptoms of PTSD

The symptoms of PTSD may develop suddenly or can begin gradually and worsen over time. Symptoms present themselves in a variety of different ways among sufferers based upon co-occurring disorders, individual makeup, and symptom severity. The symptoms of PTSD are generally grouped into three different types and can include:

Re-Experiencing Symptoms:

  • Flashbacks – reliving the traumatic event for minutes or even days at a time
  • Nightmares
  • Severe distress when reminded of the trauma
  • Triggered by words, objects, or situations that remind the person of the event
  • Disruptions in everyday routine
  • Intense physical reactions to flashbacks

Avoidance Symptoms:

  • Feeling detached from others
  • Avoiding certain places, events, or objects that remind a person of the trauma
  • Challenges recalling important parts of the traumatic event
  • General memory problems
  • Hopelessness about future
  • Emotional numbing
  • Trying to avoid thinking or talking about event
  • Avoiding activities once enjoyed
  • Trouble concentrating

Hyperarousal Symptoms:

  • Bering easily startled or frightened
  • Self-destructive behavior
  • Feeling constantly tense or on-edge
  • Irritability or anger
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Overwhelming guilt or shame
  • Hearing or seeing things that aren’t there
Effects

Effects of PTSD

If not properly treated, the long-term effects that accompany PTSD can cause significant impairment in the lives of those struggling with this disorder. Additionally, the presence of PTSD can place a person at higher risk for developing a number of other mental health disorders and certain medical illnesses. Fortunately, proper treatment, support, and lifestyle changes can help people move past their PTSD and go on to lead happy, healthy lives. Long-term problems that may develop, or get worse, due to untreated post-traumatic stress disorder, include:

  • Chronic pain
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Social isolation and withdrawal
  • Loss of occupational or scholastic functioning
  • Decreased ability to have successful interpersonal relationships
  • Separation or divorce
  • Substance abuse and addiction
  • Worsening physical health problems
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Eating disorders
  • Self-harm
  • Suicidal thoughts and behaviors
Co-Occurring Disorders

PTSD and co-occurring disorders

It is rare that post-traumatic stress disorder occurs on its own; it often presents alongside other mental health disorders. In fact 80% of those diagnosed with PTSD struggling with another disorder. Some of the most common comorbid, co-occurring disorders may include:

  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • Substance abuse and addiction
  • Depressive disorders
  • Other anxiety disorders
Unsure of the help you need?
Marks of Quality Care
Why does this matter?
  • The Joint Commission (JCAHO) Gold Seal of Approval
  • The Jason Foundation

My son was admitted here and through the care, compassion & medical treatment he has been clean & sober. Because of this facility, he is alive and very happy. We are all grateful that he went to Pacific Grove Hospital.

– Cindy A.
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