The Importance of Mental Health in Military Veterans

The Importance of Mental Health in Military Veterans

If you are a veteran or a veteran’s family member, you may have questions about the importance of mental health in military veterans. You might be wondering what causes mental health issues in veterans, or how to deal with those who suffer from them. Here are a few things you should know.


The United States Department of Veterans Affairs conducts research on the psychological impact of military service. It offers a variety of services for current and former service members, including mental health care.

Depression in military veterans is more common than in the general population. A study by Oregon State University found that combat veterans are at an increased risk for depression in their later life.

In addition, suicide ideation is also common in active-duty military. About 18% of active-duty military members who use drugs and 9% of those who consume alcohol suffer from suicidal ideation.

Military life involves stress and exposure to significant traumatic events. These can include deployments, natural disasters, physical assault, and sexual abuse.

Stress and exposure to stressful situations can cause a range of symptoms, including depression. If you or someone you know has any of these symptoms, it is a good idea to get help immediately.

For example, anxiety disorders are characterized by feelings of uneasiness and tension. They can be treated by medication and therapy.

Combat can be a source of PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) and depression. Symptoms of PTSD include reliving the traumatic event and feeling hyperaroused or keyed up. When it is discovered that a veteran is suffering from PTSD or depression, a VA treatment coordinator can help.

VA investigators have made important strides in the field of PTSD. Researchers are currently examining the risks and benefits of new treatments. However, the VA does not award separate ratings for mental health diagnoses. Instead, it will assign a higher rating based on the severity of the symptoms.

In addition to addressing the needs of veterans, the VA also encourages family and friends to support them. This can help alleviate some of the stress and make it easier for people to talk about their issues.

If you suspect that a friend or colleague is suffering from PTSD or depression, it is best to approach them without judgment. By doing so, you can offer encouragement, support, and let them know you are there to listen.

If you need to speak with a mental health professional, call the VA toll-free at 800-845-VAT (855-887-4878). You can also visit VA’s website, which offers a tool to find a local VA mental health professional.


A recent study has shown that military veterans have higher rates of depression and anxiety than civilians. Although these disorders can be treatable, it’s important to seek help. The Department of Veterans Affairs offers a list of resources.

Military life is full of stress. It fosters a culture where soldiers are expected to be strong. This can result in many mental health conditions.

There are several different types of anxiety disorders. Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is characterized by persistent, excessive worry about things. These symptoms can cause problems in daily activities. Some patients will require medication.

Social anxiety disorder (SAD) is a more severe form of anxiety. This disorder causes a person to avoid social situations. Symptoms include trembling, sweating, dizziness, a racing heartbeat, and panic.

PTSD is another anxiety disorder in veterans. This disorder can lead to feelings of loss of control, flashbacks, and changes in sleep patterns.

Specific phobias are irrational fears that are out of proportion to the real danger of an object or situation. The fear is so overwhelming that it interferes with daily life. Common phobias include insects, heights, and driving.

Despite the fact that armed forces do not require disclosure of mental health issues, veterans still suffer from a high rate of depression and anxiety. Moreover, they use unhealthy coping mechanisms to deal with their anxieties.

In a recent study, the VA found that the number of reported anxiety disorders in the military increased 327% between 2000 and 2012. Among active-duty soldiers, 25 percent tested positive for a mental disorder. Unlike civilians, soldiers are hesitant to seek help.

Mental health conditions can appear in adulthood, and some symptoms can be attributed to a personal history or personality trait. However, the stressors that trigger anxiety disorders can be difficult to identify.

For instance, a traumatic event may cause a fight or flight reaction, even if it’s in a relatively safe place. If left untreated, anxiety can become chronic. Getting treatment can improve the quality of life of veterans who experience it.

Regardless of whether a PTSD or anxiety disorder is the cause of your problem, the best solution is to talk to a mental health professional. Seeing a therapist can help you understand your condition and develop healthy coping strategies.


Schizophrenia is one of the most disabling diseases in the world. The disorder causes disturbances in thinking and emotions, and it can disrupt a person’s ability to work or relate to others. Symptoms include hallucinations, delusions, disorientation, and grossly inappropriate behavior.

While schizophrenia can be diagnosed and treated, it can drastically change a person’s life. It can also prevent them from achieving the success they desire. If you think your loved one is suffering from this mental health disorder, it is important to reach out for help.

Fortunately, the United States military and VA have made efforts to improve the treatment and care of veterans with service-related schizophrenia. However, it can still be a challenge to get disability benefits for schizophrenia after discharge.

There are several ways to pursue a claim. You can consult an accredited representative to help you with the process.

Whether you choose to consult with an accredited representative or seek services directly from the VA, there are a few things you should know about the process. Remember that you have the burden of proof of “as likely as not.” Rather than rely on lay statements, use a doctor’s diagnosis as evidence.

To ensure that you receive the most favorable treatment, make sure you have all the collateral materials and documentation you can. For example, if you are considering a secondary service connection for schizophrenia, you may want to ask a VA resident psychiatrist to document your symptoms. This will help you establish the secondary service connection and allow you to apply for additional disability benefits.

You can also obtain a medical nexus, which is a statement from a qualified healthcare professional. Oftentimes, a doctor will disclose a condition to a veteran without putting him or her at risk for losing their medical clearance.

Ultimately, the success of your claim depends on your ability to demonstrate that your schizophrenia is service-related. Luckily, there are many resources available to you, including those provided by the Atlas Institute for Veterans and Families.

By utilizing the best resources, you can help your veteran receive the disability benefits he or she deserves. Getting the most out of the process will be easier when you contact an accredited representative.

Treatment options for affected veterans

For Veterans who have experienced a traumatic brain injury, or PTSD, treatment is available. Getting help can lead to recovery, a more fulfilling life, and improved relationships.

Approximately one in five military veterans suffer from some form of mental health disorder. While combat can increase the risk of developing PTSD, many other factors can also contribute to negative moods. These include poor health, unemployment, and financial difficulties.

The VA offers a wide range of treatment options for affected military veterans. These include group therapy, individual therapy, and medications.

When considering a therapist, it is important to find a professional who understands your situation. Some veterans try several therapists before finding the right match.

Treatment options can include antidepressants and cognitive behavioral therapy. Antidepressants can improve sleep patterns, ease nightmares, and reduce intrusive thoughts. Cognitive behavioral therapy can also help individuals deal with stress.

Another option is exposure therapy. During exposure therapy, a patient will experience the traumatic memory in a safe environment. This will help them to process the traumatic memory and feel better about themselves.

A third option is Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. In this type of therapy, a patient is encouraged to act in ways that are in alignment with their values and beliefs. Ultimately, the goal is to help the patient reach their goals and overcome their emotional pain.

Regardless of the type of treatment, the VA provides Veterans with the resources they need to manage their mental health. Many Veterans have been able to find happiness and a sense of purpose after treatment.

If you are a Veteran or a friend of a Veteran, it is critical that you seek treatment. PTSD and other mental health conditions can affect your health, your relationships, and your work productivity. Fortunately, VA can help you find the treatment you need.

You can contact the VA to find a therapist or clinic that can help. You can also connect with other Veterans and mental health professionals. It can be helpful to have someone to support you throughout the recovery process.

There are many free services and organizations that offer treatment for struggling Veterans. These include groups, self-help programs, and 12-step meetings.

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