So what is post-traumatic stress disorder? In short form, it is a severe, anxiety-related disorder that stems from unresolved trauma; a disorder that can be extremely disruptive to daily life when left untreated. PTSD can last for months or years, and it affects every individual in different ways based on the trauma that was suffered and pre-existing factors such as genetic predisposition or underlying mental health conditions. It is important to note that because the disorder is so individualized, what causes the development of PTSD in one person might not affect a different person so gravely. For example, say one person gets into a significant car accident and sustains some major injuries. For them, the experience results in post-traumatic stress – flashbacks, nightmares, and the active avoidance of motor vehicles. Say another person gets into a car accident and sustains the same injuries. For them, the entire ordeal might have been painful and uncomfortable, but they might not have endured any lasting psychological issues as a direct result. It all depends on the individual person.