The Role Of PTSD In The Military

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Post Traumatic Stress Disorder On March 19, 2003, then President George W. Bush “gave the green light to launch Operation Iraqi Freedom” (, 2009). From the start of the war to present day, the casualties of American military personnel were calculated to be in the range of over 4,000 that have served in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF). The number of wounded military personnel returning from deployment was upwards of 31,000. According to research conducted by Burke, Degeneffe & Olney (2009), traumatic brain injuries (TBI) and post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are the signature injuries of military personnel returning from OIF deployments. While there are elevated rates of military personnel returning from OIF with …show more content…

Some of the PTSD symptoms experienced by military personnel returning from deployment, include reliving the traumatic event, avoiding anything associated with the traumatic event, and feeling hyper-vigilant and irritable (Burke et al., 2009). Research conducted by Hoyt (2011), reveals that “…rates of PTSD in service members returning from OEF/OIF range from 1.4 to 31%… In the Veteran’s Health Care System (VA), 37% of OEF/OIF veterans receive a behavioral health diagnosis, with 22% receiving a diagnosis of …show more content…

This therapy involves a combination of non-trauma focused therapy, eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR), and exposure therapy. The non-trauma portion of this therapy does not address the underlying traumatic event that caused the PTSD, but teaches the use of relaxation techniques and involves non-directive counseling. The EMDR therapy involves the military personnel identifying a traumatic memory and discussing a negative or positive thought related to that memory. The therapist then would move an object, back and forth, in front of the patient’s eyes, while focusing on the negative memory. The procedure would continue until the positive thoughts related to that memory, increased and the negative decreased (Burke et al., 2009). The exposure therapy takes place in a controlled environment and involves the gradual exposure to a replica of the stimuli, which triggered a negative reaction. Some of the creative exposure techniques being utilized involve computer technology and have proven to be both practical and effective (Burke et al.,

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