PTSD When the Past Doesn't Term Paper

  • Length: 20 pages
  • Sources: 15
  • Subject: Military
  • Type: Term Paper
  • Paper: #10145376

Excerpt from Term Paper :

The study also revealed that 9% of those still in active military service developed psychiatric disorders. It concluded that many of them displayed psychotic symptoms other than flashbacks and dissociative symptoms. These symptoms are essential parts of PTSD.

Most of the war veterans investigated exhibited psychotic symptoms of either depressive or schizophrenia. O the PTSD patients, 9% also suffered from major depressive disorder with psychotic features, while 11% had psychotic disorders. Many of them showed psychotic symptoms other than flashbacks and dissociative symptoms. Psychotic symptoms are essential parts of PTSD and relates to the trauma.

Personality disorders were found to be critical in developing PTSD after combat trauma. Alcohol dependence was often found in these afflicted soldiers. it, thus, presented as a risk factor to developing alcohol dependence after combat trauma. PTSD soldiers without personality disorders, on the other hand, confronted the risk of developing co-morbid depressive disorder and psychotic symptoms. This study suggested that psychotic symptoms differ from flashbacks and symbolically and strongly connect to the trauma. The findings also underscored the existence of complex PTSD. This type covers symptoms, which include changes in affect regulation, consciousness, perception of self and the offender, relationships, and one's set of meanings.

Lapp, K. et al. (2005). Lifetime Sexual and Physical Victimization Among Male Veterans and Combat-Related Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Military Medicine: Association of Military Surgeons of the United States study conducted by the authors found that the majority or 96% of the cohorts of veteran men with combat-related Post-traumatic Stress Disorder experienced a form of sexual or physical victimization at some point of their lifetimes. The experiences were highest during childhood at 69%, adulthood at 93% and in recent periods, such as the past year. These were in the form of sexual assault, which was common in childhood at 41% and 20% in adulthood, and physical assault, which was common in all life phases. They experienced physical assault in childhood at 60%, 93% in adulthood, and 44% in the past year. The specific types of abuse in childhood were hitting, choking, intentional burning, threatening with weapons, and sexual violations. Evidence also suggested that combat veterans with PTSD were more likely than those without to display aggressive behavior. They would get involved in physical brawls related to PTSD symptoms they experienced. Patterns of victimization could play a role in perpetuating the cycle of abuse. Almost half of all the surveyed veteran men said they experienced some form of assault in the past year alone. A similar study, on the other hand, strongly correlated child physical or sexual abuse and recent victimization. Recent assault was seen as potentially entailing ongoing physical and emotional danger, which could affect the course and severity of combat-related PTSD.

Leider, C. (2004). Deployment Takes Toll in Troops, Kin. The (Colorado Springs) Gazette: ProQuest Information and Learning Company

The Pikes Peak Mental Health extended treatment to 5,000 returning soldiers and their families and noted an increase in their number. The solders exhibited minor depression, difficulty re-integrating into society and their usual day-to-day living and developing PTSD. Pikes Peak Mental Health maintains an 18-bed mental health unit. The management said that most inpatients are diagnosed with less severe conditions, such as minor depression.

Most soldiers need help to readjust to life at home. Most of them return to wives who have already become independent or unfaithful or a financial problem presents itself. Some people change and the soldier may just discover that he has become a stranger in his own home.

Eisen, S.A., et al. (2004). Lifetime and 12-Month Prevalence of Psychiatric Disorders 8.169 Male Vietnam War Era Veterans. Military Medicine: Association of Military Surgeons of the United States

Eisen discusses the findings of a study on the prevalence of psychiatric disorders among Vietnam War veterans conducted by the National institute of Mental Health Diagnostic on 8,169 respondents. They served in the military during the 1965-75 Vietnam War era. It found that roughly 72% of them had a lifetime history and a 12-month history of at least one psychiatric disorder. The disorders were alcohol abuse or dependence at 54% lifetime and 17% 12-month; smoking at 48% lifetime and 22% 12-month; and PTSD at 10% lifetime and 4.5% 12-month. The study concluded that psychiatric disorders were prevalent among more than 8 million Vietnam War era veterans. This conclusion would strengthen the call and challenge to prevent, identify and treat these illnesses among American veterans.

Gerlock, a.A. (2004). Domestic Violence and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder for Participants of a Domestic Violence Rehabilitation Program. Military Medicine: Association of Military Surgeons of the United States

Gerlock describes the 62 male participants of a domestic violence program meant to keep them active within the program. Completers and non-completers were compared, based on the relationship established between PTSD and the severity of domestic violence. Forty-seven of them were veterans, 14 of them in active status. More than half of them or 55% were Caucasian, 29% were African-American, 6% Latino, 5% Asian-American, 3% Native American and 2% mixed races. Their age range was 20 to 62 years, with a median of 38.81 years. Completers were less than 35, gave higher self-ratings in relationship mutuality, less stress and post-traumatic stress and regularly court-monitored.

Non-completers tended to confront higher rates of repeated violence of up to a year more than completers. Those who commit domestic violence preferred to complete shorter programs. But shorter programs did not deal with the full range of abusive behaviors and thus were insufficient to impact these behaviors. Longer programs require them to travel for longer periods from work, hence approximately 2/3 of them dropped out from the programs.

In establishing the connection between PTSD from childhood and domestic violence in adulthood, the study correlated a child's witnessing domestic violence, PTSD and the severity and frequency of domestic violence in adult life. The strong concern of researchers behind this study was the relationship between the batterers' PTSD levels, the abuses they committed and their non-completion of the rehabilitation programs.

American Family Physician (2003). What You Should Know About Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. American Academy of Family Physicians: Gale Group

The magazine says that PTSD can develop from a traumatic experience. It may be a severe car accident, a natural disaster, military combat or a crime, such as rape. Although not everyone develops it after a traumatic event, those who do could feel alone or guilty that they survived while others did not. The anxiety could last for months or years. PTSD can be detected by the doctor if the consulting patient has clear nightmares, flashbacks and bad memories. The patient would not stop thinking about the event or events and cause him fear and panic in each recall. He would also have an upset stomach or a headache during the recall. He would avoid thoughts, feelings, persons and places connecting or reminding him of the event. He may find it difficult sleeping or remaining asleep. He may be irritable and prone to anger or fail to pay attention or concentrate.

For treatment, doctors prescribe a medicine for depression or anxiety. The patient is instructed to sleep at certain hours consistently. Consulting with a mental health professional may also be advised. Therapy is usually hourly sessions held weekly or monthly. If the treatment is adequate and followed consistently, PTSD symptoms should disappear within a few months. But the treatment takes long. In the meantime, patients can cooperate with the treatment by taking their medicines at prescribed durations; sleeping at the same time each night at a dark and quiet place with a comfortable temperature; refraining from food two hours before sleeping; exercising regularly; and eating a balanced diet.

MacDonald, M (2003). Evaluation of Stress Debriefing Interventions with Military Populations. Military Medicine: Association of Military Surgeons of the United States

The author discusses formal interventions used to mitigate the psychological impact of traumatic experiences in members of the military. Two of such interventions developed and implemented were the Critical Incident Stress Debriefing and Process Debriefing.

A study conducted on British soldiers who fought at the Gulf War under the Army War Graves Service found that only 25% of them sought help for their symptoms. Soldiers often believed that their symptoms were an inevitable consequence and part of their work. They felt that being strong and "tough" meant not seeking psychological help. Avoiding reminders of their trauma meant avoiding the help needed by those who suffered from the trauma. Current informal peer debriefings conducted during pre-deployment training appeared to have limited effects. There could be better results if these were conducted by trained peers with the same experiences. The recipients of the debriefings might also feel more comfortable revealing very personal emotions with a colleague than with outsiders in formal debriefings.

The study contended that many soldiers preferred the opportunity to express personal feelings of anger and guilt and recognize that these would be a normal emotional response to trauma. A study on the effects of stress training and the two formal interventions mentioned earlier was…

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