Life satisfaction in people with post-traumatic stress disorder

Thanos Karatzias*, Zoë Chouliara, Kevin Power, Keith Brown, Millia Begum, Therese McGoldrick, Rory MacLean

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


Background/Aims There is limited research on the association between post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and life satisfaction in community samples. We set out to investigate levels of life satisfaction and its demographic, trauma related and clinical predictors in a sample of people with PTSD (n = 46).Methods Participants completed a battery of standardised self-report measures including Satisfaction with Life Scale, the PTSD Checklist and The Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale.Results Our results indicated that people with moderately severe PTSD in the community are likely to experience lower levels of life satisfaction compared with those with other psychiatric conditions or those without any diagnoses. Multivariate analysis revealed that marital status and trauma symptoms were the only significant predictors of life satisfaction. In specific, being married and presenting with less severe posttraumatic symptomatology were both significantly associated with higher levels of life satisfaction in people with PTSD.Conclusions The strong association between traumatic symptomatology and life satisfaction may indicate that routine assessment for life satisfaction or similar positive constructs in people with PTSD, referred for psychological therapies might be useful. Information on positive psychology constructs may facilitate capitalising on clients' strengths and not just on pathology.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)501-508
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Mental Health
Issue number6
Early online date8 Nov 2013
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Life satisfaction
  • Marital status and relationships


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