In the heart of the military community, a conflict often remains unseen, yet its casualties are all too real. This is the battle against mental health disorders – the hidden wounds carried by our servicemen and women.
Among those who serve, mental health issues like Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), depression, and anxiety are significantly higher than the civilian population. The stressors associated with military service, from the rigors of training to the horrors of combat, can leave indelible marks on the psyche. Yet, these struggles often remain silenced due to stigma and misunderstanding.
PTSD, for instance, is a significant concern among veterans. The trauma of war can trigger this condition, leading to flashbacks, nightmares, and severe anxiety. Depression, too, is widespread among active duty personnel and veterans, often co-existing with PTSD. These conditions can affect individuals, their families, and communities.
The effects of PTSD are far-reaching for those affected by it. It can cause intense emotional distress, manifesting in various ways, such as irritability, anger outbursts, or even violent behavior. Those who have PTSD may also experience difficulties forming relationships – both romantic and platonic – due to fear of abandonment or rejection caused by trust issues related to their trauma. In addition, they may struggle with concentration problems or insomnia due to intrusive thoughts about the event(s). These issues all make everyday life more difficult for someone with this condition.