• Wed. Feb 21st, 2024

Healing Hearts: Therapist Discusses Challenges and Successes in Treating Soldiers with PTSD


Feb 13, 2024
We Lack Sufficient Knowledge on Treating Stress and Fight Responses

One memory that will stay with me forever is the time I cared for a soldier who had gone through traumatic events. He had an older brother struggling with PTSD, and the family was going through a difficult emotional upheaval. As a therapist, I spoke with the parents multiple times to understand their concerns and provide guidance. It was heartwrenching to see how deeply they cared about their son’s well-being.

Working with soldiers can be incredibly intense, and returning to other responsibilities at the hospital can be challenging. But what makes it all worth it is seeing how much progress they make in their mental health journey. Even after just a few days of therapy, I saw a marked improvement in his condition, which was relieving for both him and his family.

One of the most significant challenges I face as a therapist is the lack of knowledge we have about treating combat stress and trauma. Our experience in helping people recover from long-term trauma is more extensive than our understanding of providing immediate care in such cases. Research on this topic is scarce, which makes it difficult to provide effective treatment for soldiers experiencing PTSD or other mental health issues related to their service.

If there were one thing I could improve about mental health services for soldiers today, it would be to ensure that resources remain accessible even after they return home from deployment. Reservists often face unique challenges when transitioning back into civilian life, and they may need ongoing support to maintain their mental well-being.

Despite everything they’ve been through, soldiers continue to fight bravely and remain committed to their duties. However, it’s important to recognize that there’s still room for improvement when it comes to addressing the complex situations soldiers encounter while serving in combat zones. We need more open discussions about these issues and more access to mental health services for both active duty service members and veterans alike.

In conclusion, trauma affects not just soldiers but also their families and communities as a whole. We must offer acceptance, containment, and assistance to anyone who needs help coping with mental distress caused by their military service. By increasing the availability of mental health services for all individuals suffering from PTSD or other related conditions, we can help them heal and move forward with confidence and hope for the future.

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