What are the most important factors for the RN to assess when dealing with a client who is exhibiting flashbacks?

A 35-year-old man, former Army sergeant, was involved in a multi-vehicle accident on a major highway. He was relatively unhurt, but witnessed several bodies strewn across the road immediately after the accident. This caused him to experience “flashbacks” from an active Army combat zone several years earlier. He begins to have nightmares of the accident and becomes unable to function at home.  His wife accompanies him to a Crisis Unit where he is subsequently admitted to the Mental Health Unit of a local hospital with a diagnosis of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Initial Discussion Post:

Address the following:
What are the most important factors for the RN to assess when dealing with a client who is exhibiting flashbacks?
How might the RN foster therapeutic communication with this client?
List three common flashback triggers for former military personnel and describe how the RN can assist to decrease the effects.
Provide two nursing diagnosis statements (each statement must include an actual nursing diagnosis, related factor and as evidenced by) that might apply to former military personnel experiencing flashbacks. (No risk-for diagnoses permitted.)

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