America has been involved in various military engagements and wars for close to twenty years now, first starting in Iraq and Afghanistan, and spreading to other parts of the Middle East. While at times there may be arguments over whether they classify as “wars” or more along the lines of various combat missions as a whole, the reality is that war is war, and it takes a toll on those who serve our country. The brave men and women who volunteer to be a part of the United States Armed Forces such as the Navy, the Marines, the Air Force or the Army, are all prepared to give their life for their country and their fellow soldier.
Whether or not one specifically engages in actual combat is only one part of the equation. The reality is that whether you are single, or have a family, being on deployment can be arduous, tiring and take a toll on your physical and mental health. Not everyone will be as affected the same way; some will be able to bear these burdens quite well and not give it much thought, while with others it may be more of a struggle. It is important to realize that those who struggle are not any weaker than those who do not struggle, just as an individual stronger or weaker than another is any different. Mental health issues should not be viewed as a weakness; on the contrary, it should be an issue that is discussed often and something that one can get help for.
Think about what a typical soldier or commander might have to face on deployment: generally long hours for most, time away from their immediate family and friends and usually having to spend time in a foreign country. Add to that the possibility of being engaged in combat if deployed in a war zone, and you can likely experience exposure to a whole other realm of emotions, feelings and problems. More soldiers in the U.S. military have died from suicide than from any sort of combat in recent years, and this is a problem. Military vets, both current and past, need quality help and mental health care after performing their incredible sacrifices to our country. Without it, we will likely continue to witness them having a difficult time integrating back into the civilian world once they are either finished their tour of duty, or have finished serving with the military as a whole.
If you are a military veteran, or you happen to know a military veteran who is having a difficult time with either a mental or behavioral health issue, there absolutely some ways you can help. After facing combat and not being in the heat of battle any longer, or even simply being a part of a military structure, issues can take hold, such as PTSD or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Depression is another serious issue, as well as dealing with anxiety, which can all affect one’s day to day life in a profound way.
One idea is to get involved with a Veterans group, such as dgdagdgsdg or adsfgausda, which can bring veterans together to talk about their experiences, issues they might be dealing with, or other various topics. There is great support amongst these groups, and there will likely be a local chapter available near where you currently live.
Another aspect is to consider the services of a mental health expert or facility; many are well-acquainted with the issues that military veterans face, and can end up being the difference between a lifetime of mental or behavioral health issues, and finding freedom again. Peak Behavioral is able to offer a free and confidential assessment for military veterans by calling 888-599-9808.
Spending time with family and friends and making the time to go to functions, parties and gatherings can help acclimate a veteran to civilian life again as well, bit by bit.
There are many ways to help facilitate a better transition for military veterans; mental or behavioral health issues can definitely cause many of these problems, so always keep in mind that it is not a weakness to admit that you are struggling with a problem inside yourself – by doing so and reaching out for help, it can help change your life for the better than you could have ever imagined.