Tuesday, December 2, 2008

More than Two Thirds of Americans Unaware of PTSD

This does not surprise me at all. The problem is no one wants to talk about it or listen. It's almost as if they hear about it, they will be aware of the fact it could happen to them as well. PTSD hits humans exposed to traumatic events. Everyone knows they cannot prevent traumatic events. It's out of their control. What really gets me is that the families of the men and women serving and of our veterans don't want to hear it. Military wives tell me they have enough to worry about and they don't want to think about it. It takes a lot of convincing for them to understand they are on the front lines when their husbands come home. They'll be the first to notice the signs of PTSD but if they don't know what the signs are, they will ignore what the changes mean. They will delude themselves in thinking the warrior will just get over it with time. In the process time that could have been spent on the warrior healing ends up being lost time as PTSD eats away at them and the family.

As hard as it is to convince the families they need to pay attention, it's harder to get the clergy involved. This is imperative especially with the National Guards and Reservists coming home to communities around the nation. When the mind-body-spirit are all treated the healing rate is greatly increased. There are not enough psychologist and mental health professionals to go around and then when you add in claims being tied up, the clergy could play a vital role in filling in the gaps. The problem is when you try to talk to most of them, their eyes glaze over as if you're speaking in a foreign language.

It's been over a 26 year battle for me to get the information out there and with that I also have to add that I have never had so much hope for our veterans. They are coming forward and talking about it to the media finally willing to cover it and give PTSD the attention it deserves, even if it is sparse.

I left this comment on Veteran's For Common Sense after reading this.

Dec 1: More than Two Thirds of Americans Unaware of Post Traumatic ...
By contact@veteransforcommonsense.org

Ad Council and Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America

Army Times

Dec 01, 2008

December 1, 2008 - In a survey conducted Oct. 24-27, most of the 1,008 respondents said they had never even heard of the acronym PTSD, or post-traumatic stress disorder.

Of the respondents, 9% answered "Yes, I have heard of it but am not sure what it stands for."

24% said "yes, I have heard of it and know what it stands for," and a whopping 68% of respondents stated "no, I have never heard of it."

* Veterans for Common Sense note: We need your help to get the word out that PTSD is real, that one-in-five (or more) of our Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans may return home with PTSD, that it is OK for veterans to seek care for PTSD, and that DoD and VA need to hire more doctors to meet the tidal wave of demand for PTSD treatment and recovery.

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