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HIV w/ PTSD
Mar 16, 2014

I was wondering can HIV make PTSD get worse?

Response from Dr. Fawcett

Thanks for writing. PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) is a serious condition where unresolved feelings related to past trauma are reactivated, causing significant distress. There are many aspects to living with HIV that can ignite such old feelings and reactions related to PTSD. Having a history of trauma actually increases the likelihood of becoming infected with HIV, and complicates living with HIV as well. As anyone who has received a positive HIV test will tell you, that alone is traumatic and can reactivate old unresolved trauma through an "emotional bridge."

There are effective treatments for PTSD. If you have such a history please seek out a mental health provider who can provide such interventions. Check with you medical provider for a referral, or ask friends who might have had similar experiences about mental health professionals who were helpful to them.

Take care,

David



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