As a consequence of the stresses of war and inadequate job training, when they get out of the service many have fallen behind their contemporaries. If they are fortunate enough to become employed, many of them are unable to hold a job due to untreated PTSD and acquired addictions without services and counseling designed for them. These factors may place our returning veterans at a higher risk of suicide. In 2007, the US Army reported that there were 115 suicides among OIF/OEF veterans. This was the highest number of suicides reported since the Army started keeping track about 30 years ago. In general, the risk for suicide among these veterans was not higher than that found in the U.S. population (Tull). However, there are several programs and 24 hour suicide hotlines available for those that may contemplate committing suicide as an option.
The Air Force lost 38 airmen to suicide in 2008, a rate of 11.5 suicides per 100,000 airmen. The average over the past five years — since the start of Operation Iraqi Freedom — was 11 deaths per 100,000 annually. Of the airmen lost in 2008, 95 percent were men and 89 percent were enlisted. Young enlisted men with a rank of E1 to E4 and between the ages of 21 and 25 have the highest risk of suicide. Recently released data indicates that active duty males carry, for the first time in known history, a suicide risk greater than that of comparable males in the general population (Psychotherapy Brown Bag, 2009). This is particularly noteworthy considering that the military entrance process screens out serious mental illness prior to entry onto active duty, and that the rate of suicide in military males has historically been significantly lower than comparable civilian populations. To help
The answers to this question amazed me. I have found out that close to 17 veterans commit suicide daily and, over a year, that number adds up to over 6,000 suicides. I have also discovered that half of veterans with suicidal thoughts and tendencies do not seek help for their problems out of fear of being judged. Perhaps the most shocking statistic I found was that during the Vietnam War, the number of veterans' suicide greatly exceeded the number of deaths caused during combat. The two main information sources I used to answer this question are my expert interview and a GALE article titled Growing Public Health Crisis of Domestic Violence and Suicides by Returning Veterans. I asked my expert specifically about the statistics of veterans' suicide and she gave me a lot of insight on the issue. The GALE article contains a lot of statistics such as the daily number of veterans' suicide. My thoughts about the statistics of veterans' suicide are mainly about how shockingly high they are. I was surprised when I found out that 17 service men and women commit suicide every day. I was even more surprised when the article said that over 6,000 suicides occur every year and I calculated that number myself just to make sure. My findings on the statistics of veterans' suicide are both shocking and twistedly
PTSD and suicide are two things that are very common among veterans in the U.S.. A recent study has shown that there are a much as 8,000 veteran suicides a
(Zilvin 2007). A study was conducted to identified higher risks of suicidal in veterans, and the conclusion stated that veterans that are depressed have higher risk for suicide. This results can assist to focus on a certain group continuously and monitor closely to detect suicidal behavior and prevent it. Another cause of suicide is PTSD leads to depression and if not treated could lead to suicide but more study is to be done. ?For example, use and frequency of psychotherapy visits and adherence to psychiatric medications could influence the relationship between depression, PTSD, and completed suicide? (Zilvin 2007).
According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, (2015) veterans comprise 22.2% of all suicides. The suicide data reports of 2012 estimated 22 veterans commit suicide everyday (Kemp & Bossate, 2012). Evidence-based studies show one of the major reasons behind the large number of veteran suicides may be related to undiagnosed mental disorders such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). The Department of Veteran Affairs reports, “8 percent of the five million veterans using VA care have been diagnosed with PTSD” (U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, 2014). This gap in mental health treatment among veterans negatively affects our nation as a whole. It is our duty to implement policies that provide a better quality and quantity of mental health services for the soldiers that
(2013) show that female veterans reported a sense of burdensomeness, failed belongingness, and repeated exposure to painful and provocative stimuli, which led to a desire for death and the capacity to enact lethal self-harm (Gutierrez et al., 2013). These findings are consistent with other qualitative study of female veterans who served in the military. It is also important to note that the economic cost and the human cost of suicidal behavior to individuals, families, communities, and states make this a serious public health problem. For example, the average cost of one suicide is about $1,795,379 and the total cost of suicides/suicide attempts is roughly $93.5 billion (Shepard et al., 2015). Roughly 97% of this cost is due to lost productivity and the remaining 3% is due to medical treatment (Shepard et al., 2015). Without a doubt, developing evidence-based mental health care and suicide prevention programs is an effective method that can help to address the issue of suicide especially among female veterans. Therefore, the proposed bill should be enacted to facilitate meeting the long-term needs of female military veterans from the current conflicts (Gutierrez et al.,
This academic journal states the physiological effects on soldiers who are in the Veteran Affairs Department. This sources states that it is not the negligence of veteran care that causes veterans to commit suicide; however, it is their mental mindset that is driving them to do so. The source provides facts on how the VA works and treats the veterans in the facility. For example, the source provides
Regardless of the numbers, or rates, one Veteran suicide is one too many. The VA and many other prominent veteran organizations, military leaders, and community leaders, continue to spread the word that “Suicide Prevention is Everyone’s responsibility.” The VA continues to address Veterans’ needs through strategic partnerships with community and federal partners and seeks to enhance these partnerships. However, the core issues are not being solved. The government or its administrative entities will not be able to solve the veteran suicide crisis. The VA’s negligent record of mismanagement, patient abuse, nepotism, and outright bullying and suppression of whistleblowers, speaks for
Sadly, the National Guard has seen the biggest surge in veteran suicide rates since 2012, even more so than the Active component of the military. In the data collected, suicide reports were very similar to the Active components findings; white males aged 17-24, with families and children (Griffith 2012). Between 2007 and 2010 more than 80% of suicides linked
Why does Veterans Affairs ignore the fact that AUD is one of the leading causes of suicide? There are 22 veteran suicides completed on a daily basis and this number is smaller than the true number as this is from veterans who are actually registered in the Veteran Affairs health system (Subhajit Chakravorty et al. 2014). The following are the leading factors leading to veteran suicide: The use of drugs and alcohol, male, white, married or separated, and having an mental health disorder.
Suicide among veterans is a national concern and suicide prevention is a priority for the VHA. In concern for the health and well-being of military service members and veterans, congress has mandated implementation of a comprehensive VHA suicide prevention program. The VHA is the only large health care organization to assess suicide mortality among its entire patient population (McCarthy et al, 2009).
(2012) suggest that suicide prevention strategies must be implemented by professionals who understand military culture and the unique pressures of social cohesion and mental health stigma. Braswell and Kushner (2012, p. 535) agree that efforts must be implemented in a way that “account for the lived experience of soldiers.” Although these recommendations are in line with a growing body of academic scholarship on the topic of military suicide, it will be difficult to implement successful policy without a better understanding of what is behind the difference and change in suicide rate. With incomplete information or a lack of causality, policymakers will be unprepared to determine if the outcomes of their actions are an improvement compared to maintenance of current
Active Duty Service Members. Traditionally, the U.S. military has faced lower suicide rates compared to their civilian counterparts. However, the suicide rate among active duty military personnel has increased in the last decade, almost doubling in the Army and Marine Corps. Unlike the low active duty suicide rates of Vietnam, OEF/OIF active duty suicide rates are at near record highs (McCarl, 2013). Once again, it is believed that multiple deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan is one of the culprits of this staggering statistic. Since operations has begun in the Middle East in 2001 through 2011, there have been 2,810 military personnel who have committed suicide while on active duty (McCarl, 2013).
Suicide in the United States is the 11th leading cause of death, with over 32,000 killing themselves per year. While some causes or explanations for suicide will never be known, depression or other diagnosable mental or substance abuse disorders top the list of more than 90 percent of why lives are torn from us. Over the last couple years around the military there has been much debate on whether this rate has been drastically affected by the increased military footprint from fighting two wars. Prior to the recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the military suicide rate was well below the civilian rate. The sharpest increase started within the Army and Marine Corps shortly after 2001, as these services were the most involved in combat.