PTSD sufferers report memory problems and these include cognitive problems (e.g intrusive recollections of the traumatic events), problems remembering facts, autobiographical details, appointments, etc. (see Moradi et al., 1999; http://www.mrc-cbu.cam.ac.uk/research/emotion/cemhp/documents/ptsd_everyday_memory.pdf, retrieved April 4, 2012).
From the authors, important psychological consequences of the trauma are durable and may affect the child education and school performance. Among the psychological consequences, the scholars note "altered attentional processes, deficits in cognitive systems necessary for learning, inefficient memory systems, deficits in effective responsiveness, and so on."
How this is possible ? What are the possible explanations of these memory deficits as a consequence of being exposed to traumatic event and thus presenting a PTSD ? There are two assumptions pointed out by the scholars (Moradi et al., 1999) :
- PTSD symptoms (instrusions, avoidance and hyper-arousal) affect the everyday memory and possibly the learning skills;
- Reduction of the hippocampus as a result of PTSD severity can be an alternative explanation. It is established that the hippocampus intervene in the memory functioning, thus it can be deducted that reduction in hippocampal volume affectnegatively the memory functioning.
Confirming the above mentioned assumptions, clinicians should have full informations about the PTSD sufferer memory state before the trauma exposure and the PTSD onset.