Episode 86: Did I Leave the NICU with PTSD?

Tiffany Gladdis, Hand to Hold NICU Babies Parent Support podcast

Guest: Tiffany Gladdis, PsyD

The NICU often leaves caregivers, and babies, with anxiety and overwhelm and sometimes something more complex, like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Licensed clinical psychologist Dr. Tiffany Gladdis shares the difference between anxiety and PTSD and what parents can do to address their triggers and receive treatment.

In this episode, we chat about:

  • How did you get interested in clinical psychology, specifically focusing on the NICU?
  • What’s the difference between anxiety and PTSD?
  • What are some symptoms/markers of PTSD and how does a parent receive that diagnosis?
  • What are the treatment options?
  • A new term and diagnosis people are starting to hear is C-PTSD (complex PTSD). What’s the difference between the two and might a NICU parent experience one or the other? 
  • Can a baby experience PTSD? If so, symptoms? Treatment?
  • What’s your best advice to a parent who’s feeling overwhelmed, triggered or otherwise feeling like they need professional help to manage everything?

Dr. Tiffany Gladdis is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist in Neonatology and the Medical Director of the Office of Equity and Diversity at Children’s Mercy Hospital, as well as an Associate Professor at the University of Missouri at Kansas City. Dr. Gladdis provides therapy and support to families in the Fetal Health Center, NICU, and NICU follow-up clinic and her clinical interests include attachment and bonding, trauma, infant and perinatal mental health, and BIPOC populations. Dr. Gladdis also serves on the board of Hand To Hold.

Connect with Dr. Gladdis:


Instagram: @hope.love.heal/ 

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The NICU is hard. We’re here to help.

Hand to Hold is a national nonprofit dedicated to providing neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) parents with personalized emotional support, educational resources and community before, during and after their baby’s NICU stay. NICU support is available at no cost to NICU parents in English and Spanish.

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This page was last modified on Jan 22, 2024 @ 3:00 pm. If you see any information that needs to be updated or corrected, please contact info@handtohold.org.