Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in War Veterans

2517 words 11 pages


Alwin Aanand Thomson

American Degree Program

SEGi College Penang


Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a severe anxiety disorder that can develop after exposure to any event that results in psychological trauma. This event may involve the threat of death to oneself or to someone else, or to one's own or someone else's physical, sexual, or psychological integrity, overwhelming the individual's ability to cope. As an effect of psychological trauma, PTSD is less frequent and more enduring than the more commonly seen acute stress response. Diagnostic
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The events are sometimes re-experienced through intrusive memories, nightmares, hallucinations, or flashbacks. Symptoms of PTSD include troubled sleep, irritability, anger, poor concentration, hyper vigilance, and exaggerated responses. Emotions felt by victims of PTSD include depression, detachment or estrangement, guilt, intense anxiety, panic, and other negative emotions (2005).

Out of over 240,000 veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan already discharged from the service, nearly 13,000 have been in U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) counseling centers for readjustment problems and symptoms associated with PTSD (Welch, 2005). Operation Iraqi Freedom has become the deadliest American conflict since the Vietnam War and because of this, new data detailed by shows that 12 to 13 percent of troops returning from Iraq reported PTSD symptoms while about 3 to 4 percent reported other mental distress. A new Army study found that 11 percent of troops returning from Afghanistan reported symptoms of mental distress. Although wartime psychology was just beginning during the Vietnam War era, later studies showed that nearly 15 percent of troops who served there suffered PTSD. The most recent studies found that nearly 30 percent of the Vietnam War veterans have developed physiological problems after returning from the war. PTSD estimates for veterans of the first Gulf War range between 2 and 10 percent (2004).

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