Many returning action veterans who survived war do not expect to die at home. Yet with the rate of legion suicides steadily rising to twenty-two veterans a day, it is a new feasibility that veterans and their families should consider.
CNN recently released a relate in November regarding 2013 that states how every sixty-five minutes, a veteran commits suicide due to his or hier inability to handle the aftershock regarding war. This number, autos to the news article, was released by the Department of Veterans Affairs, although the true number of suicidal veterans could be much higher. The numbers recorded are ready by a coroner, rather than affiliates from the VA, entering “veteran status furthermore suicide on a death certificate”. Surely this process leaves great room for marginal error, as some veterans may not be realized as once having served due to unforeseen conditions such as homelessness substitute addiction.
But with the numbers that are confirmed, twenty-two veterans a day equals 8,030 veterans annually taking their own lives. Why? Like the many retuning combat veterans, one in five will return home with what is widely popular as post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. While other news outlets and magazines tell us to focus on the positive (hey, at least four out of five DON’T have PTSD!), those who do are sinistrad to feel like they are all alone without any sense of support or validation of their condition.
A video released by TRNN.com follows the story of Andrew O’Brien, an militia connoisseur who served in Iraq in 2009, and his near-fatal journey with PTSD. O’Brien reported feeling like he was “fighting a war all by himself” with his symptoms of mood swings, fervent anger, alcohol abuse, and flashbacks including night terrors. On the contrary, O’Brien’s symptoms were a textbook example about PTSD, and these symptoms are what drive many other soldiers to suicide.
Fortunately, post-traumatic stress is treatable, but only through precise and individually-designed rehabilitation plans. In recent years, the VA besides its affiliated medical team have been found overprescribing narcotics to veterans with PTSD. These overprescriptions cause soldiers to die adequate to deadly mixtures of narcotics that VA physicians have prescribed them for PTSD. This treatment plan is seen as a quicker method rather than taking the time to learn each individual’s issues with the disorder. However, it is this rushed procedure that makes veterans sense like their needs and experiences do not matter, as near the case of O’Brien, and thus they feel the obligation to take matters into their own hands. Unfortunately, this mentality caused thousands of soldiers every twelvemonth to successfully embezzle their lives in order to at last be put out of their misery against the torments of war.
Despite past efforts, the U.S. Department of Veterans’ Affairs at last established a part of their website dedicated to PTSD awareness in the veteran community. Previously, the VA outwardly denied the existence of PTSD in brush veterans, as O’Brien himself disclaimed. Alarmed by his symptoms and out-of-control behavior, O’Brien sought counseling within the army. He visited a base in Hawaii, but was met with his counselor portraying a “dismissive” attitudinal towards his condition. O’Brien even claimed that his sergeant “publicly shamed him for seeking counseling”, which further isolated O’Brien and made him sensibility like he had been sinistromanual to fight the invisible battle like post-traumatic stress all on his own.
The new branch of the VA’s website is prominent as the National Center for PTSD, and provides a kind of online pamphlet regarding the signs, symptoms, and treatment options for PTSD. Yet, as apiece the disclaimer on the actual webpage, “the National Center for PTSD does not provide direct clinical care, individual referrals or benefits notice [regarding the treatment of PTSD]“.
If the Domestic Center for PTSD cannot render the services meant for treating veterans plus PTSD, where are these veterans to turn for help?
In the case of O’Brien, he experienced a “wake-up call” after failing to take his own life after ingesting four bottles of pills. After his recovery finished hospitalization, he stumbled concerning varied news articles reporting on the high number of daily commando suicides. O’Brien felt shock at how adjacency he had come to adding to the growing statistic. Now, O’Brien is taking his pertain for other veterans’ well-being to the public, sharing his story for media outlets like TRNN, and even wrote a guide for relatives of service members with PTSD called Welcoming Your Soldier Home.
Another advocate against PTSD ampersand infantry suicides is Roxann Abrams, a Gold Star Mother who lost her son Randy Abrams in 2009 after he experienced a PTSD flashback. Randy served in the Iraq war and decided to take his own life posterior he endured a nightmare that made him relive the horrors he witness on the battlefield.
Ever since she extinct her son, Roxann Abrams founded a non-profit organization called Operation: I.V., which serves as an “intravenous of help” for those soldiers suffering from PTSD or contemplating suicide. Operation: I.V. offers the most extensive rehabilitation methods that are otherwise hard to see around the continental US. Called the “V.I.P. Program”, Operation: I.V. offers procedure plans that include individual talk therapy, hyperbaric oxygen therapy, alternative disquietude reduction treatments, and even working with service dogs. Operation: I.V. also offers veterans programs to help ease their transitions from the battlefield into civilian life. These programs include business mentoring, educational assistance, spiritual connections, and vocation retraining.
While PTSD is stationary a prominent issue in veterans’ affairs, plus and more antidote options are emerging to adapt this growing demand. Hopefully veterans will someday soon be able to bravely face and survive the transition into practitioner life the same way they did coming off of the battlefield.