Trauma, Coverage of

The lay definition of “trauma” can be quite broad (such Merriam-Webster’s more general definition of “an emotional upset”). For the purposes of this entry, trauma is defined in accordance with the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) involving close exposure to (or threat of) death or the experience of serious physical or sexual harm or violence. Importantly, exposure to a traumatic event does not necessarily trigger the psychiatric condition of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), which the DSM-5 states can result from directly experiencing the traumatic event, witnessing it in person, learning it has happened to a close family member or friend, or experiencing repeated or extreme vicarious exposure to details of an event through digital means if it ...

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