Can PTSD interfere with your ability to work?

On Behalf of | Feb 8, 2023 | Workers' compensation

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) may manifest in the aftermath of any traumatic event. This includes stressful events that happen at work, especially in jobs with a high rate of traumatic incidents like emergency responding units.

Unfortunately, PTSD of any sort gained in any way may substantially limit a person’s ability to work.

PTSD symptoms and signs

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission discusses the ways that PTSD can interfere with a person’s life.

First, many people with PTSD suffer from intrusive thoughts. These thoughts usually have some sort of disturbing nature about them and will often tie in directly to the traumatic incident. This can also manifest in nightmares or flashbacks.

Many people want to avoid the things that remind them of the traumatic incident, or things that will cause flashbacks to occur. Unfortunately, if the incident ties into a person’s work, this is almost impossible to do.

The impact on workers

On top of that, people do not sleep well when suffering from PTSD. This may make it even harder to work, as it can make it harder to concentrate. Workers who do not get enough sleep are often more prone to negligent acts in the workplace, which could cause big problems.

PTSD sufferers also typically experience depression or anxiety, which may make them quick to anger and have struggles when coping with stressors.

PTSD may also trigger fight or flight responses and create panic responses that make it difficult or even impossible for a person to concentrate on their job. Combined, these issues make it hard for a person to carry on with their work.