Afterburn is a psychoanalytical term that refers to the lingering effects of a past event on a individual's mental state and daily life. This term was coined by Eric Berne (1910-1970) who proposed that an afterburn was the "period of time before a past event is assimilated."

Afterburn occurs after the event is already over- the contrasting concept is called reach back which is the effects of an event/situation before it happens (for example, the stress and anticipation before a big event).

Examples of afterburn can be as minor as the residual stress or anxiety after a big exam to as serious as the extreme anxiety or PTSD a soldier suffers after returning from combat.

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