Shell Shock vs. PTSD

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Social Studies
World War I

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Shell Shock vs. PTSD

Though this sounds very familiar to an officer suffering with PTSD there is a difference. Shellshock is more a result of experiences of combat and PTSD is more of a broad idea on anxiety disorder. If solider who was diagnosed with shellshock was diagnosed today, they would be recognized as someone with PTSD. This is because both can occur from being a solider and the tough burden it can have on mental state. PTSD can be diagnosed to anyone who has anxiety which could be an effect of a diaster or abuse.

Historical Background

"...everyone had a 'breaking point': weak or strong, couragous or cowardly- war freightened everyone witless..." -Arthur Hubbard- French WW1 Soilder

Shell shock was a form of mental breakdown suffered by those soldiers in trench warfare. Its no wonder that 80,000 cases were delt with of just the British officers. The conditions were unthinkable. According to Mary Jolly, a nurse during WW1, a solider with shell shock told her about his nightmares, "I see wounded men on the ground and the tanks coming along and just mowing through the wounded men."


1) Joseph, Stephen. "Is Shell Shock the Same as PTSD?" Is Shell Shock the Same as PTSD? 20 Nov. 2011. Web. 14 Jan. 2015. . This webside is written by a man with a Ph.D in psycology 2) Bourke, Joanna. "Shell Shock during World War One." BBC News. BBC, 10 Mar. 2011. Web. 14 Jan. 2015. 'lt;'gt;.This website is written by a woman who is a Professor of History at Birkbeck College and the author of a number of books and inculded a letter written from a french soilder in WW1 (Primary Source)3)"Shellshock in World War One." YouTube. YouTube, 8 Oct. 2009. Web. 14 Jan. 2015. .This website leads to a video that interviews a nurse during WW1

What is the difference between shell shock seen in WW1 soilders and PTSD seen in modern day soilders?

Answer / Info

Shell Shock VS. PTSD

Shell Shock Victim


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