No one should have to live with a disabling injury or illness, but many Americans do every day. One of those illnesses is post-traumatic stress disorder, which can be brought on by exposure to traumatic events.
While people often discuss treatments like cognitive-behavioral therapy or psychotherapy, these methods of treatment won’t work for everyone. Instead, some people may need a more direct approach with a stellate ganglion block.
What should you know about a stellate ganglion block?
Abbreviated as SGB, the stellate ganglion block is a potential way to control post-traumatic stress disorder in serious, chronic cases.
SGB is an invasive procedure, but it’s simpler than you may believe. To perform it, an injection of local anesthetic is made into the stellate ganglion. This is a nerve bundle that you’ll find at the back of your neck.
The stellate ganglion is important because it is responsible for the “fight or flight” response. When this nerve is overactive, people may feel that they are chronically on alert and struggle with high anxiety. Comparatively, those who the treatment works for feel calmer again in their bodies.
Some of the benefits of the SGB include:
- Relief from sleep disturbances
- Relief from irritability
- A reduction in hypervigilance
- Better concentration
- Reduced jumpiness
The procedure could be life-changing for some patients and can be completed in less than 20 minutes. The goal is to help reset the body’s fight or flight response and to restore a sense of calm and safety.
How many treatments do patients need, and will it be successful?
Normally, patients only need one or two treatments. Effectiveness has been established at around 83%, although every patient’s experience will be different. The treatment was pioneered in 2006 to “unstick” the brain from remaining in the “fight or flight” response that PTSD brings on.
Not everyone will benefit from this procedure. If you have tried this or other procedures with no positive results, then you may want to look into Social Security Disability to provide you with coverage while you explore additional treatment options to relieve the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder in the future.