June 25, 2015
National PTSD Awareness Day is Saturday, June 27th this year. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is an important issue that should be talked about. So many of our military heroes come home after serving and go untreated for PTSD.
PTSD is a mental health problem that can occur after someone goes through a traumatic event like combat, assault, or disaster. Symptoms of PTSD include persistent intrusive thoughts and distressing dreams about the traumatic event, triggered emotional responses to reminders of the trauma, efforts to avoid thinking or talking about the trauma, and persistent hypervigilance for cues that indicate additional danger or trauma re-occurring.
The number of Veterans with PTSD varies by service era according to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is as follows:
- Operations Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and Enduring Freedom (OEF): About 11-20 out of every 100 Veterans (or between 11-20%) who served in OIF or OEF have PTSD in a given year.
- Gulf War (Desert Storm): About 12 out of every 100 Gulf War Veterans (or 12%) have PTSD in a given year.
- Vietnam War: About 15 out of every 100 Vietnam Veterans (or 15%) were currently diagnosed with PTSD at the time of the most recent study in the late 1980s, the National Vietnam Veterans Readjustment Study (NVVRS). It is estimated that about 30 out of every 100 (or 30%) of Vietnam Veterans have had PTSD in their lifetime.
The good news is that there are resources and treatment options for veterans and active military personnel who may be suffering. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has a lot of resources for learning about PTSD treatment.
Other resources include:
The Veterans Crisis Line (1-800-273-8255)
The Veterans Crisis Line connects Veterans in crisis and their families and friends with qualified, caring Department of Veterans Affairs responders through a confidential toll-free hotline, online chat, or text. Veterans and their loved ones can call 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1, chat online, or send a text message to 838255 to receive confidential support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Support for deaf and hard of hearing individuals is available.
A resource library and dashboard for Veteran patients going through VA Mental Health services.
If you or someone you love are experiences symptoms of PTSD, seek treatment. Don’t let PTSD get in the way of your life, hurt your relationships, or cause problems at work or school.