No Visible Injury

NO visible injury has placed thousands of military veterans, police officers, firefighters, and EMTs out of work. In some cases, no visible injury has even cost them their lives.

ptsd awareness

I’m not talking about exposure to hazardous materials, cardiac conditions, or even respiratory injuries. I want to talk about mental illness specifically, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PSTD). This is the one condition no one would have even considered before taking the oath to serve the public or their country.

Over the past few years, the words or letters associated with PTSD have become more of an awareness to the general public. People are starting to understand what PTSD is and how it can affect someone’s life. But the fact still remains that the people who have suffered from PTSD have not been recognized as they should. Sure we are learning more about PTSD every day. It is still placed on the list by some as a condition that should have been recognized by the individual who has been diagnosed.

It is not like a back injury or a broken leg, something you feel sudden pain. Injuries you sustain from moving in the wrong direction or falling from a building. When you are involved in a motor vehicle collision you can sustain injuries that could take time to heal.

PSTD is not like any other injury. It can not be fixed in six to eight weeks, a surgery or two, followed by weeks of physical therapy. PTSD takes time, in most cases years to reduce the effects that may never go away. This is why we say PTSD is an injury that people never see.

Living With PTSD

Living with PTSD can be a challenge every day. Some days that seem simple to most people, become a challenge for people suffering from PTSD. For first responders, it could be the sound of a siren from a fire truck or ambulance. Military veterans could become anxious from just walking done the street passed an alley.

Learning to live with PTSD is like a child learning to walk. There are times when you fall back into depression or anxiety. Then there is the time when the skills you needed to learn, help you get back on your feet. These skills take time along with practice to help you over some difficult situations.

You continue to have days that remind you of the trauma that caused the PTSD. Doing simple things that you have done for years becomes difficult. The memories are always in your mind. Some days just getting out of bed to start a new day really is not a simple task.

What would you do if you ran into an old colleague you worked with for a number of years. In the past, you had so much to talk about. It is the nature of the business of public safety professionals to have a somewhat strange sense of humor. Days that you have shared a number of incidents that turned into “did you see that” type of conversation. Then the conversations when you would compare the different incidents you responded to. Just to see who had the best story.


Coping with PTSD can be done in a few different ways. One of the first things you need to do is to recognize you may be suffering from symptoms of PTSD, this is the hardest part. One who is suffering from PTSD usually first response is to deny it and to self-medicate. There could also be some incidents of repeat trauma or disassociative event.

Once you or someone around you helps you recognize you need help. Do not hesitate to get treatment from a professional who has experience with PTSD. There are a lot of great mental health professionals in the field. However, many of the try to treat PTSD as just another mental illness. Trust me, it is not.

Everyone or almost everyone who suffers from PTSD finds different ways to cope with their symptoms. I have learned from my experience, that self-care is one of my favorite ways.

This includes taking time for yourself. Whether it be meditation while listening to music or focusing on the sounds around you. Grounding tactics I also found work best when the symptoms are acute. Focusing on a detailed description of something as simple as a pencil or your cell phone.


The injuries associated with PSTD are not as apparent as it seems. Years have gone by, as far back as the civil war, before people recognized the symptoms of PTSD. Over the past few years, PTSD is starting to become more recognized. As time goes by even mental health professionals are learning that PTSD has become a long-lasting diagnosis. There are ways to cope with PTSD that help you reduce anxiety and depression.

I hope you have learned a little about PTSD today. There is so much more that we can learn. One of the biggest things I have learned is the OLD public safety statement “burnout” is more the continued exposure to trauma without learning to cope.


Thank you for reading, Please “Like” “Share” and “Follow” for more of my posts on Travel and Living with PTSD.

Ken Kelli
Ken & Kelli Travel Advisor

PS: I would love to hear from you. Add a comment below, even if it’s just to say “HI.”

Published by ksag3

After spending over 30 years in Public Safety as a firefighter and paramedic, Ken has retired from a career he loves. Ken was recruited to become part of a Specialized Team that focuses on introducing Holiday Inn Club Vacations and the array of benefits they provide. After, working in an industry where he can continue giving back to people while enjoying the love for travel. Ken makes himself available to help you start planning the memories you deserve for you and your family. You deserve to experience life to its fullest before your time here comes to an end. Ken will even put together a group trip for corporations, businesses, community organizations, and even school trips. This website is dedicated to Public Safety Professionals, Fire Responders, Military Veterans, and all who suffer from PTSD or any mental illness. Ken is sharing where he was, where he is, and more opportunities that just may work for you. Please stop by regularly for future updates.

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