79 PTSD Statistics & Facts: How Common Is PTSD?

11 Jan 2022
PTSD statistics show it affects 11-20% of Iraq/Afghanistan veterans & 20% who experienced trauma. Effective treatment options are needed.

The prevalence of PTSD is particularly concerning in the United States, where it is estimated that nearly 8 million adults are affected. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, PTSD is more common in women than men and is found among people of all ages.

It can be caused by a variety of traumatic events, from natural disasters to military combat. Additionally, recent studies have found a correlation between PTSD and other mental health conditions, such as depression and anxiety.

How Common is PTSD Among Adults?

Approximately 3.6% of adults in the United States have PTSD in any given year.

17 Key PTSD Statistics

  1. Approximately 8 million adults in the United States suffer from PTSD in a given year.
  2. Women are twice as likely to suffer from PTSD as men.
  3. About 60% of men and 50% of women experience at least one traumatic event in their lifetime.
  4. Approximately 1 in 11 people will be diagnosed with PTSD in their lifetime.
  5. Veterans are at a higher risk for developing PTSD, with about 11-20% of veterans who served in Iraq or Afghanistan experiencing PTSD.
  6. First responders, such as police officers and firefighters, are also at a higher risk for developing PTSD.
  7. Childhood trauma, such as physical or sexual abuse, increases the risk of developing PTSD later in life.
  8. About 50% of individuals with PTSD also suffer from depression.
  9. Substance abuse is also common among individuals with PTSD, with about 80% of individuals with PTSD also suffering from a substance use disorder.
  10. African Americans are more likely to experience PTSD than Caucasians.
  11. The prevalence of PTSD is highest among individuals aged 18-29.
  12. PTSD can occur in response to a wide range of traumatic events, including sexual assault, natural disasters, and car accidents.
  13. Symptoms of PTSD may not appear until months or even years after the traumatic event.
  14. PTSD is treatable, but many individuals with PTSD do not seek treatment.
  15. Cognitive behavioral therapy and medication are effective treatments for PTSD.
  16. The stigma surrounding mental illness may prevent individuals with PTSD from seeking treatment.
  17. PTSD can have a significant impact on an individual's quality of life, including their relationships, work, and overall well-being.

How Common is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in Adults?

Source: nimh.nih.gov
  • Approximately 3.6% of adults in the United States have PTSD in any given year.
  • The prevalence of PTSD among women is nearly twice as high as men (5.2% vs. 2.7%).
  • Among people who experience a traumatic event, about 8% will develop PTSD.
  • The lifetime prevalence of PTSD is estimated to be around 7-8%.
  • Those with a history of mental illness are more likely to develop PTSD after experiencing a traumatic event.
  • Veterans are particularly vulnerable to developing PTSD, with an estimated 11-20% experiencing symptoms each year.
  • People who have been sexually assaulted or abused are also at higher risk for developing PTSD, with an estimated 30-80% experiencing symptoms.
  • Children and adolescents who experience trauma are also at risk for developing PTSD, with rates ranging from 3-15%.

PTSD Statistics in the United States

  • In the United States, PTSD is the third most common mental health condition, after depression and anxiety.
  • Approximately 50% of individuals with PTSD do not receive any treatment for the condition.
  • The economic burden of PTSD in the United States is estimated to be $42.3 billion annually.
  • Among veterans who served in Vietnam, it is estimated that up to 30% experience symptoms of PTSD.
  • PTSD has been found to be more prevalent among individuals with lower income and education levels.
  • An estimated 70% of adults in the United States have experienced some form of trauma in their lifetime, with approximately 20% developing PTSD as a result.
  • Individuals with a history of substance abuse are at a higher risk for developing PTSD after experiencing a traumatic event.

Prevalence of PTSD by Age Group

  • PTSD is more common among individuals aged 18-29, with a prevalence rate of 4.0% in this age group.
  • Individuals aged 45-59 have the highest prevalence of PTSD among all age groups, with a prevalence rate of 5.3%.
  • The prevalence of PTSD among individuals aged 60 and above is relatively low, at just 1.0%.
  • Among veterans seeking treatment for PTSD, the average age is 49 years old.
  • Older adults who experience a traumatic event may be less likely to develop PTSD than younger adults, but they may still experience other mental health challenges such as depression or anxiety.

Prevalence of PTSD by Gender

  • Women are twice as likely to suffer from PTSD as men, with a prevalence rate of 5.2% in women compared to 2.7% in men.
  • Among individuals who experience a traumatic event, approximately 20% of women and 8% of men will develop PTSD.
  • The prevalence of PTSD is higher among women who have experienced sexual assault or abuse, with an estimated 30-80% experiencing symptoms.
  • Men are more likely to experience trauma related to accidents, physical assault, or combat, which can also lead to the development of PTSD.
  • Transgender individuals have a higher prevalence of PTSD than cisgender individuals, with rates estimated at around 16-28%.
  • Lesbian, gay, and bisexual individuals also have higher rates of PTSD compared to heterosexual individuals, with estimates ranging from 9-60% depending on the subgroup and the type of trauma experienced.

Prevalence of PTSD Based on Type of Trauma

  • Sexual assault survivors have a higher risk of developing PTSD than any other group. Approximately 94% of women who experience sexual assault will experience symptoms of PTSD in the two weeks following the attack and 30% will continue to experience symptoms nine months later.
  • Combat veterans are also at high risk for developing PTSD, with an estimated 11-20% experiencing symptoms each year.
  • Survivors of natural disasters, such as hurricanes or earthquakes, may also develop PTSD. One study found that approximately 30% of individuals who experienced Hurricane Katrina developed symptoms of PTSD.
  • Those who have experienced a serious accident or witnessed a violent crime may also be at risk for developing PTSD. Approximately 10% of car accident survivors develop PTSD.

PTSD and Trauma: Statistics and Risk Factors

  • In one study, nearly 70% of individuals who experienced combat-related trauma reported symptoms of PTSD.
  • About 90% of individuals who survive a suicide attempt have a diagnosable mental illness, including PTSD.
  • Women who experience sexual assault have a higher risk of developing PTSD than women who experience other types of trauma.
  • Among individuals who experience a mass shooting, about 33% will develop PTSD.
  • The rate of PTSD among individuals who experience a natural disaster can vary widely depending on the severity of the disaster and the individual's proximity to it.
  • About 30% of individuals who seek treatment for PTSD do not respond to first-line treatments.
  • The economic cost of PTSD in the United States is estimated to be over $42 billion per year.

PTSD in Veterans: Statistics and Risk Factors

  • PTSD affects approximately 11-20% of veterans who served in Iraq or Afghanistan.
  • About 30% of Vietnam War veterans have experienced PTSD at some point in their lives.
  • The risk of developing PTSD is higher among veterans who experience combat, as opposed to those who do not.
  • Veterans with a history of mental illness are more likely to develop PTSD after experiencing a traumatic event.
  • Veterans who have been sexually assaulted or harassed during their service are also at a higher risk for developing PTSD.

How Common is PTSD in Non-Military Populations?

  • Among civilian populations, approximately 3.6% of adults in the United States have PTSD in any given year, with women having a nearly twice as high prevalence rate compared to men (5.2% vs. 2.7%).
  • About 8% of individuals who experience a traumatic event will develop PTSD.
  • The lifetime prevalence of PTSD is estimated to be around 7-8%, with those who have a history of mental illness being more likely to develop PTSD after experiencing a traumatic event.
  • African Americans are more likely to experience PTSD than Caucasians.
  • Individuals with lower income and education levels are also at higher risk for developing PTSD.
  • An estimated 70% of adults in the United States have experienced some form of trauma in their lifetime, with approximately 20% developing PTSD as a result.

Statistics on the Treatment of PTSD

  • Approximately 50% of individuals with PTSD do not receive any treatment for the condition.
  • Among those who do seek treatment, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is the most effective form of psychotherapy for PTSD, with an average success rate of 53%.
  • Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is another effective form of therapy for PTSD, with success rates ranging from 60-90%.
  • Medications such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and benzodiazepines may also be used to treat PTSD, but their effectiveness varies widely depending on the individual.
  • Complementary therapies such as yoga, meditation, and acupuncture have shown promise in reducing symptoms of PTSD, but more research is needed to determine their effectiveness.

Conclusion

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that can develop after an individual experiences or witnesses a traumatic event. PTSD can affect anyone, regardless of age, gender, or ethnicity. Women are more likely to suffer from PTSD than men, particularly if they have experienced sexual assault or abuse. Combat veterans are also at high risk for developing PTSD.

The prevalence of PTSD among individuals who experience trauma varies depending on the type of trauma experienced. Sexual assault survivors have the highest risk of developing PTSD, with approximately 94% experiencing symptoms in the two weeks following the attack and 30% continuing to experience symptoms nine months later.

Despite its prevalence, many individuals with PTSD do not receive treatment for their condition. Cognitive behavioral therapy and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing are effective forms of therapy for treating PTSD, but more research is needed to determine the effectiveness of complementary therapies such as yoga and meditation.

Sources

  • American Psychiatric Association. (2017). Practice guideline for the treatment of patients with posttraumatic stress disorder.
  • Bisson JI, Roberts NP, Andrew M et al. Psychological therapies for chronic post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in adults. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2013;12:CD003388.
  • National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: In Depth.
  • American Psychological Association. "By the Numbers: PTSD Among Military Veterans."
  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. "Trauma-Informed Care in Behavioral Health Services."
  • National Center for PTSD. "Trauma Types."
  • National Institute of Mental Health. (2020). Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
  • American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (5th ed.).
  • "Prevalence and correlates of probable posttraumatic stress disorder and depression among secondary school students in Jos, Nigeria" by Owoaje et al. (2016)
  • "Prevalence and correlates of posttraumatic stress disorder: A literature review" by Breslau et al. (1999)
  • "Posttraumatic stress disorder among Canadian forces personnel deployed in support of the mission in Afghanistan, 2001–2008: Prevalence and risk factors" by Richardson et al. (2010)
  • "Prevalence of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, Depression, and Anxiety Among Gulf War Veterans: A Systematic Review" by King's Centre for Military Health Research (2017)
  • "Estimated prevalence and incidence of sexual harassment and discrimination among US Army soldiers" by Street et al. (2020)

Recent Articles

Home-Based Strategies for ADHD Treatment

June 24, 2024

Discover effective home-based ADHD treatment strategies to empower parents and improve children's lives.

Benefits of ADHD Therapy for Kids at Home

June 24, 2024

Unlock ADHD therapy for kids at home: Effective tools for behavioral intervention and cognitive growth.

Community Rehab Programs for Children with ADHD

June 24, 2024

Discover empowering community ADHD rehab programs, tailored treatments, and support for your family.

Practical Tips for Managing ADHD in Children at Home

June 24, 2024

Master managing ADHD in children at home with practical tips, nutritional advice, and effective strategies.

Community Mental Health Programs for Children

June 20, 2024

Explore community mental health programs for children, and how they bridge gaps in care for our next generation.

Best Online Kids Therapy Programs

June 20, 2024

Discover the best online kids therapy programs, providing accessible, effective mental health support.

Effective Therapy Options for Kids

June 20, 2024

Explore types of therapy for kids, from play to psychotherapy, empowering young minds for a healthier future.

Exploring Mental Health Therapy for Kids

June 20, 2024

Explore effective mental health therapy for kids, empowering brighter futures with tailored treatments.

Mental Health Services for Children

June 20, 2024

Discover how mental health services for children can transform lives, providing strength through struggle.

Overcoming Anxiety In Children At Home

June 20, 2024

"Empower your child! Learn effective techniques for overcoming anxiety in children at home."

Anxiety Rehab Programs For Kids At Home

June 20, 2024

Discover life-changing anxiety rehab programs for kids at home, offering hope and transformation for your child's future.

Community-based Anxiety Therapy For Children

June 19, 2024

Explore community-based anxiety therapy for children: A roadmap for parents navigating childhood anxiety.

Home-based Anxiety Management For Kids

June 19, 2024

Discover home-based anxiety management for kids. Create calm at home from routines to relaxation.

Children's Anxiety Treatment At Home

June 18, 2024

Empower yourself with effective childrens anxiety treatment at home - relax, support, and manage like a pro!

Support For Adhd Families At Home

June 17, 2024

Empower your ADHD family with our guide on resources, strategies, and support for ADHD families at home.

Support For Explosive Disorder Families At Home

June 17, 2024

Find support for explosive disorder families at home, explore treatments and coping strategies.

Support For Children With Mental Health Issues

June 17, 2024

Explore essential support for children with mental health issues in NY: resources, services & legal aid.

Home-based Mental Health Support For Kids

June 17, 2024

Explore home-based mental health support for kids in NY: resources, professional help, and self-care tips.

Support For Families Through Child Waiver Programs

June 17, 2024

Discover how support for families through child waiver programs can ease the struggle and bring solutions.

Community Waiver Services for Children

June 14, 2024

Discover community waiver services for children. A definitive guide for New York parents seeking support.

Home-Based Waiver Programs for Kids

June 14, 2024

Discover home-based waiver programs for kids, simplifying care and assistance for your special needs child.

Children's Waiver Services

June 14, 2024

Explore children's waiver services, their benefits, and how to access them in New York for special needs support.

Can a Parent Sign a Waiver for a Child?

June 14, 2024

Explore 'can a parent sign a waiver for a child?' Learn about legality, practices in NY, and more.

What Is a Waiver of Service for Child Support?

June 14, 2024

Discover what a waiver of service for child support entails and how it benefits special needs families.

The Importance Of Family Support In Teen Mental Health Recovery

June 14, 2024

Explore the importance of family support in teen mental health recovery and the role it plays post-COVID.

Waiver Services for Special Needs Children

June 13, 2024

Navigate 'waiver services for special needs children' - unlock government programs and state services.

Short-Term Care for Children with Special Needs

June 13, 2024

Explore short-term care for children with special needs: from education to respite services.

Home-Based Respite Services for Kids

June 13, 2024

Explore home-based respite services for kids in NY: a beacon of hope for caregivers of special needs children.

Respite Services for Children with Disabilities

June 13, 2024

Explore respite services for children with disabilities. Discover resources, benefits, and support networks.

Community Respite Programs for Families

June 13, 2024

Explore community respite programs for families, offering relief and support for your unique needs.

Respite Care for Children Near Me

June 12, 2024

Discover the best 'respite care for children near me' in New York – your haven for child care relief awaits.

Respite Care for Children NYC

June 12, 2024

Discover NYC's respite care for children, eligibility, funding options, and how it can help your family.

Respite Care for Children with Special Needs

June 12, 2024

Discover how respite care for children with special needs boosts family dynamics and mental health.

How to Get Respite Care for My Child?

June 12, 2024

Learn how to get respite care for your child, explore financial aid and locate trusted services.

What Is Respite Care for Child?

June 12, 2024

Unveil the power and benefits of respite care for children and find peace amidst life's challenges.

Parenting Group Therapy Activities

June 11, 2024

Explore effective parenting group therapy activities designed to strengthen family bonds and enhance well-being.

How Long Does Group Therapy Last

June 11, 2024

Dive into the ins and outs of group therapy and discover 'how long does group therapy last?'

Group Therapy Topics For Youth

June 11, 2024

Explore group therapy topics for youth, fostering growth and resilience through shared experiences.

When Group Therapy Is Not Appropriate

June 11, 2024

Explore when group therapy is not appropriate, discover exclusion criteria and understand individual needs.

Purpose Of Group Therapy

June 11, 2024

Explore the purpose of group therapy, its transformative power, and its effectiveness across conditions.

Group Therapy Activities For Teens

June 10, 2024

Discover effective group therapy activities for teens, fostering connection, communication, and coping skills.

What Is The Most Common Psychological Problem In Adolescence

June 10, 2024

Discover the most common psychological problem in adolescence and learn empowering strategies to overcome it.

Adolescent Issues Today

June 10, 2024

Explore adolescent issues today: mental health, social media impacts, and how to support our youth effectively.

What Are The Main Problems Of Adolescence

June 10, 2024

Discover what are the main problems of adolescence and how to navigate them with our comprehensive guide.

Common Teenage Health Problems

June 10, 2024

Unravel common teenage health problems, from body image concerns to substance use. Empower your teen today!

How To Address Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) In Teens?

June 7, 2024

Navigate 'how to address OCD in teens' - understanding symptoms, treatments, and the power of empathy.

Childhood Anxiety: Helping Children with Anxiety Thrive

June 7, 2024

Help children with anxiety thrive! Discover strategies, support, and professional intervention for anxiety in children.

The Benefits Of Nature And Outdoor Activities For Teen Mental Health

June 5, 2024

Discover the benefits of nature and outdoor activities for teen mental health. Sunshine, green spaces, and more!

How To Support A Teen With Learning Disabilities

June 5, 2024

Discover how to support a teen with learning disabilities: from early intervention to empowering tools.

Understanding Mood Swings In Adolescents

June 5, 2024

Navigate the storm of adolescent mood swings. Understand their triggers and learn effective coping strategies.

The Importance Of Routine For Teen Mental Health

June 5, 2024

Discover the importance of routine for teen mental health, from sleep to community support.

The Role Of Technology In Teen Mental Health Support

June 5, 2024

Explore how technology advances teen mental health support, from AI applications to digital therapy platforms.

How To Help Teens Develop A Healthy Self-esteem

June 5, 2024

Learn how to help teens build a healthy self-esteem. Nurture strength and resilience for lifelong confidence.

The Impact Of Divorce On Teen Mental Health

June 5, 2024

Explore the impact of divorce on teen mental health, from depression to communication challenges.

How To Support A Teen With Social Anxiety

June 5, 2024

Learn how to support a teen with social anxiety, from treatment options to creating supportive environments.

How To Support Teens During Major Life Transitions

June 5, 2024

Learn how to support teens during major life transitions with effective tools and strategies.

The Role Of Group Therapy For Teens

June 5, 2024

Explore the role of group therapy for teens, its effectiveness, dynamics, and impact on teen mental health.

How To Address Anger Issues In Adolescents

June 5, 2024

Learn how to address anger issues in adolescents with effective techniques and professional interventions.

Understanding The Impact Of Trauma On Teen Mental Health

June 5, 2024

Unveil the impact of trauma on teen mental health, its signs, treatment options, and coping strategies.

The Role Of Physical Activity In Adolescent Mental Health

June 5, 2024

Discover the role of physical activity in adolescent mental health. Exercise your way to better self-esteem and stress management!

How To Handle Substance Abuse In Teens

June 5, 2024

Learn how to handle substance abuse in teens: from recognizing signs to exploring effective interventions.

The Benefits Of Art Therapy For Adolescents

June 5, 2024

Discover the benefits of art therapy for adolescents, a powerful tool for mental health and emotional growth.

How To Help Teens Develop Healthy Coping Mechanisms

June 5, 2024

Empower teens with healthy coping mechanisms. Harness inner strength and conquer stress wisely!

Understanding The Teenage Brain And Mental Health

June 5, 2024

Explore understanding the teenage brain and mental health, from hormonal impacts to social media influences.

The Role Of Nutrition In Teen Mental Health

June 5, 2024

Explore the role of nutrition in teen mental health, from key nutrients to dietary habits.

How To Foster Positive Body Image In Adolescents

June 5, 2024

Explore how to foster positive body image in adolescents, from mental well-being to social influences.

How To Help Teens Develop Healthy Relationships

June 5, 2024

Learn how to help teens develop healthy relationships, from nurturing friendships to handling digital influences.

The Importance Of Peer Support For Teen Mental Health

June 5, 2024

Explore the importance of peer support for teen mental health and how it shapes resilience and recovery.

How To Help Teens Manage Academic Pressure

June 5, 2024

Empower teens to manage academic pressure with effective strategies for stress reduction and self-care.

The Key to Understanding Eating Disorders in Teens

June 5, 2024

Unlock understanding of eating disorders in teens: from signs to support, we help you navigate the journey.

How To Address Self-harm Behaviors In Teens

June 5, 2024

Learn how to address self-harm behaviors in teens - from recognizing signs to effective intervention strategies.

How to Support a Teen with ADHD: A Guide

June 5, 2024

Learn how to support a teen with ADHD, from academic strategies to fostering independence.

The Benefits of Mindfulness For Teenagers

June 5, 2024

Discover the benefits of mindfulness for teenagers, from stress management to enhanced academic performance.

Can I Get Healthcare Coverage for Just My Child?

June 5, 2024

Unlock how to get healthcare for just your child, from CHIP to eHealth, for confident parenting.

The Role of School Counselors on Teen Mental Health

June 5, 2024

Explore the role of school counselors in adolescent mental health, shaping resilient minds for the future.

The Impact of Bullying on Teen Mental Health

June 5, 2024

Explore the impact of bullying on teen mental health and find strategies to combat this prevalent issue.

How Much Does Health Insurance for a Child with Autism Cost?

June 5, 2024

Navigate 'how much is health insurance for a child' with autism. Uncover costs, subsidies, and more.

Healthcare for Kids with Autism: Building Bright Futures

June 5, 2024

Navigate the healthcare for kids with autism: from insurance coverage to effective care plans.

How to Create a Safe Space for Teens to Express Their Emotions

June 5, 2024

Learn how to create a safe space for teens to express emotions, using trust, dialogue, and technology.

9 Powerful Steps Effective Parenting

June 5, 2024

Master '9 steps to more effective parenting' for your child with autism. Navigate challenges confidently.

How to Get Health Insurance for Your Child with Autism?

June 5, 2024

Navigate 'how to get health insurance for my child' with autism. Simple steps to secure coverage.

How Much Time Should Parents Spend with Their Child?

June 5, 2024

Navigate the question of how much time parents should spend with their child, with a focus on autism.

Effective Discipline Tips for Parents of Autistic Children

June 5, 2024

Discover effective discipline tips for parents of autistic children; create boundaries, reinforce positively.

Which Parenting Style Encourages Children's Independence?

June 5, 2024

Discover which parenting style encourages children's independence and fosters confidence. Empower your kids today!

Parental Expectations Examples on Kids' Career Choices

June 5, 2024

Explore the impact of parental expectations examples on kids' career choices, self-esteem, and more.

Dealing with Teenage Attitude: Effective Strategies

June 5, 2024

Gain strategies for dealing with teenage attitude, from setting boundaries to spotting red flags.

Daycare Tips for Parents

June 5, 2024

Get expert daycare tips for parents and navigate the journey with confidence. Your child's care decoded!

Tips for Kindergarten Parents

June 5, 2024

Master kindergarten with our proven tips for parents, from social skills to emotional readiness.

Which Parenting Style is Most Effective?

June 5, 2024

Discover which parenting style is most effective for your child's development and why it matters.

Proven Tips for Navigating High School with Your Teen

June 5, 2024

Navigate high school parenting like a pro! Discover proven tips for parents of high school students.

Private Respite Care for Adults with Learning Disabilities

June 5, 2024

Discover private respite care for adults with learning disabilities. Find relief and support for caregivers today.

Essential Tips for Parents of Preschooler

June 5, 2024

Discover essential tips for parents of preschoolers, focusing on discipline, problem-solving and healthy habits.

Tips on How to Deal with Teenagers

June 5, 2024

Navigate adolescence with ease! Discover how to deal with teenagers, from setting boundaries to fostering trust.

Why Respite Care is Needed for Autism?

June 5, 2024

Discover why respite care is needed for autism, its impact on caregivers, and types available in NY.

How to Become a Respite Caregiver for ASD

June 5, 2024

Discover how to become a respite caregiver for ASD, join a rewarding field and make a real difference.

Respite Care for Families with Autism?

June 5, 2024

Discover the benefits of respite care for families with autism, and unlock resources for support.

Where Can One Go for Respite Care?

June 5, 2024

Discover the perfect respite care sanctuary to cater to unique needs. Find comfort, safety, and engaging activities here.

Residential Care for Adults with Mental Illness Revealed

June 5, 2024

Discover the power of residential care for adults with mental illness.

How Many Weeks of Free Respite Care Are You Allowed?

June 5, 2024

Unravel how many weeks of free respite care are you allowed. Learn about options, costs, and coverage.

Respite Care for Adults Seeking Relief from Depression

June 5, 2024

Explore respite care for adults with depression, unveiling benefits, options, and costs for much-needed relief.