Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a psychiatric disorder that can develop after experiencing or witnessing traumatic life-threatening events such as natural disasters, terrorist activity, serious accidents, assault and military exposure. All survivors of a traumatic event will be affected in some shape or form, but most individuals are able to fall back into their normal patterns of everyday life. Those who develop PTSD do not. People struggling with PTSD experience symptoms such as nightmares, flashbacks, depression, insomnia and paranoia that eventually interfere with their ability function and live daily life.
Many soldiers returning home from Iraq are struggling to return to their daily lives and schedules. PTSD and other mental health disorders are common among veterans of the Iraq War for reasons such as the following:
Soldiers are used to being strong, powerful and respected. They do not want to acknowledge PTSD symptoms or the need for professional help. Other soldiers do not want to be diagnosed with PTSD, because it can interfere with their chances of landing a government or federal job. Many returning soldiers are misdiagnosed, as PTSD requires treatment, and many veterans’ benefits programs would rather take the inexpensive route and prescribe antidepressants. Many soldiers return home with disability, but, because PTSD is not a visible wound, it does not get the attention or treatment it deserves.
When PTSD is misdiagnosed or left untreated, the symptoms will worsen and impair a person physically, mentally and emotionally. Common consequences of untreated PTSD include the following:
If you are looking for quality treatment for soldiers who are struggling with PTSD, substance abuse or other mental health concerns, call our toll-free helpline now. Our recovery counselors are ready to help 24 hours a day, and they understand the challenges facing Iraq War veterans. Whether you need answers, guidance or are ready to find a treatment program, we are here for you.