Can a stellate ganglion block help PTSD & anxiety? | AllSpine Laser & Surgery Centers

How Can a Stellate Ganglion Block Be Used to Treat PTSD and Anxiety?

A Stellate Ganglion Block is an injection of local anesthetic into the stellate ganglion nerves, which are responsible for the transmission of pain. The anesthetic blocks the nerves from transmitting pain signals to the brain. Stellate ganglion blocks are used to treat different kinds of pain. There is even research into using stellate ganglion blocks to treat PTSD and anxiety.

What Are Symptoms of PTSD?

PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) is a mental disorder that affects people who experience traumas like war, natural disasters, assault, near-death experiences and similar horrors. Some symptoms of PTSD include:

  • Intrusive thoughts and memories/flashbacks to the traumatic event
  • Avoidance of people, places or subjects related to the event
  • Changes in attitude toward family/friends or disinterest in hobbies
  • Difficulty relaxing or sleeping
  • Memory problems

What Are Common Misconceptions Surrounding PTSD?

PTSD can be difficult to identify because many people discuss PTSD flippantly or overuse the term as a catch all for psychological trauma.

PTSD Only Affects Veterans

PTSD can affect anybody—not just combat veterans. Many people survive trauma like mass shootings, horrific accidents, abuse or hate crimes every day. Victims of those tragedies may struggle with PTSD due to their experience.

PTSD will Just go Away

PTSD is not a bad memory that people typically just forget with time. Most of the time, PTSD will require professional intervention so the sufferer can overcome the trauma and move on with their life.

PTSD Is Weakness

Many people are scared to admit they have PTSD because they worry it makes them appear weak, but PTSD isn’t a flaw you can simply overcome with willpower. It is the brain’s overactive protection mechanism that’s stuck implementing involuntary fear responses against perceived potential threats.

PTSD Occurs Immediately

Some people think PTSD immediately follows a traumatic event, but that is not always true. Many people do not suffer any symptoms of PTSD until months—if not years—after the traumatic event.

What Are Symptoms of Anxiety?

Anxiety is a mental disorder where people suffer from intense nervousness, uneasiness, worrying or dread. Cell phones and social media create a sense of constant connection, which makes it difficult for people to unwind and forget about their worries at the end of the day. This constant stream of anxiety-inducing information can cause stress levels to skyrocket. Some common symptoms of anxiety include:

  • Feeling nervous or restless
  • A sense of looming danger
  • Elevated heart rate
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Gastrointestinal problems
  • Uncontrollable worrying

What Are Common Misconceptions Surrounding Anxiety?

Everybody experiences some anxiety at some point in their life. Anxiety isn’t necessarily bad since it helps people balance being carefree and being a perfectionist. It can be difficult to determine how much anxiety is too much.

Only Adults Suffer from Anxiety

Children also struggle with anxiety, so it is important to treat it seriously. Downplaying the effect anxiety has on children could lead to significant mental health problems down the road.

Extroverts Do Not Have Anxiety

An outwardly extroverted person is as likely to suffer from debilitating anxiety as somebody who seems introverted. Anxiety is not the same thing as being shy, so it is important not to confuse the two. Extroverts might just do a better job at hiding their anxiety.

Anxiety Will Pass

Anxiety might pass, but it might not. Ignoring an anxiety disorder delays the help anxiety sufferers need. Anxiety often causes a great deal of stress, which will take a toll on one’s health and quality of life.

Some Experts Believe Stellate Ganglion Block May Help People With PTSD and Anxiety

There are some psychological care professionals who are experimenting with stellate ganglion block injections as a tool to manage the symptoms of mental disorders like PTSD and anxiety. The injection is believed to help by blocking the neurotransmitters in the brain that trigger PTSD and anxiety responses.

What Are Other Reasons to Get a Stellate Ganglion Block Injection?

PTSD and anxiety are not the only reasons to get a stellate ganglion block injection. Many people decide to get stellate ganglion block injections every year to treat physical ailments like spine and nerve pain.

If you suffer from spine or nerve pain and live in Georgia, you may want to consider treating it with a stellate ganglion block injection at AllSpine Laser and Surgery Center. To schedule an appointment or learn more about stellate ganglion block injections, you can call (770) 997-0600.

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