On Monday, much of the nation observed Memorial Day. Historically, the day was a time for honoring the brave American men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country. While that is still the case, people who observe the holiday today often take a moment to also remember and honor those men and women who came home from overseas after their tours of duty. To be sure, and thankfully, those individuals are still with us. But one might find themselves wondering what Memorial Day has to do with those who survived? A question that could probably be answered in several ways.
That being said, it is an unfortunate fact that a significant young men and women come home after serving in armed conflict—changed. Some suffered serious physical injuries, and have scars to show what they went through. Whereas, others come back physically unchanged, but a have a hollow look in their eyes; the wounds they suffered are internal, and such injuries are the direct result of witnessing traumatic events. The experience of war can linger on in veterans for years to come, what is known as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). A condition which, for some, makes it almost impossible to have healthy relationships, hold employment and lead a fulfilling life.
Some veterans who come back from war with symptoms of PTSD receive treatment, and with continued maintenance do recover. The reality is that the clear majority of American servicemen and women living with post-traumatic stress are not getting the help they need. Such people often resort to drug and alcohol abuse to mitigate their symptoms. And, as a result, alcohol and substance use disorders are the byproduct of self-medication. Without treatment, the problem continues to untenable points, the substances no longer help and only serve to exacerbate the PTSD. A staggering number individuals with PTSD and a co-occurring substance use disorder, attempt and succeed at taking their own life. All of which could have been potentially avoided with treatment. With all this in mind, one could easily argue that those soldiers lost their life overseas.
PTSD Awareness Month 2017
Mental health disorders of any kind can dramatically disrupt the course of one’s life. Providing access to effective methods of treatment are paramount, not just for veterans but for anyone who has experienced trauma. As was pointed out earlier, left to one’s own devices self-medication often occurs, creating even more problems. It is absolutely vital that people experiencing symptoms of the disorder are encouraged to seek help.
June is PTSD Awareness Month, a time to encourage everyone to raise public awareness about PTSD and the treatments available. As with any form of mental illness, we can all have a hand in showing compassion and support, helping those who have been touched by PTSD.
“Greater understanding and awareness of PTSD will help Veterans and others recognize symptoms, and seek and obtain needed care.” – Dr. Paula P. Schnurr, Executive Director of the National Center for PTSD.
June 27th is PTSD Awareness Day. For more information on how you can help people suffering from untreated PTSD, click here.
Holistic Treatment For Mental Health
The therapeutic drug and alcohol treatment process at the Hemet Valley Recovery Center & Sage Retreat occurs within a holistic, cognitively-oriented framework. It is facilitated through educational, task oriented and process groups. Introduction to the twelve-step program and philosophy is a component of treatment. Our experienced, professional staff fully grasps the need for treating the whole patient, both substance use and any other form of mental illness that may accompany the insidious disorder. Please reach out to HVRC today. Recovery is possible.