What are the biggest problems facing veterans returning home from conflict?

We are talking about both physical and psychological issues. The average civilian cannot understand the array of veterans’ problems returning from service in Afghanistan or Iraq. And they cannot be considered separately from each other because these infections live in one person. And returning home to a peaceful land gives no guarantee for a hundred percent cure. Maybe you won’t hear gunshots in your dreams at night anymore, but you can’t rule out the possibility that sooner or later, your consciousness will remember it.

What kinds of problems do they face after their return?

One of the most common but not the worst injuries a soldier can suffer while on duty is a mild form of head trauma (CTS). We all know it as a concussion.  But it should be noted that, unfortunately, it doesn’t stop there. Like depression, anxiety, mild irritability, severe irritability, alcohol problems, concussion, and suicidal thoughts are added to the physical ailments.  This can be caused not only by fighting and being in the epicenter of it. Many men and women are traumatized because they have been exposed to sexual violence, which of course, does not go away and leaves an imprint on their bodies and their spirits. It is incredible to realize what the human body and mind can endure after an experience. Though, alas, not everyone can handle it.

Are there other barriers to getting good care?

A significant problem facing retired soldiers is not knowing where and to whom they can turn with their problems. After all, military service guarantees medical care, and when they return home, the care of their health shifts to their shoulders. And that there are mental health benefits for veterans and how to apply for them.

The Veterans Health Administration treats its patients just as well as other private and public clinics. However, availability and some services are different. Studies show that once the diagnosis is made, the treatment process for the former serviceman does not move forward in any way, and the person is left to face his problems. The reasons for this problem are hidden in trivial things, such as: not being able to get to these facilities, having the probability of being distracted or leaving the new place of work, or limitations in communication with relatives.

With this in mind, a particular picture emerges of what can be done to improve the situation. It can be seen that there is a need for specialists who are qualified in the field of postmortem trauma: its identification, definition, classification, precise diagnosis, and quality treatment. At the same time, there is a growing need for diagnostic equipment, which will significantly facilitate the task of examining and treating pathologies. And an increase in the number of medical centers whose activities will assist in the complex rehabilitation of the victims.

What about problems apart from health-related issues?

The problems that occur during post-military adaptation cannot be separated. They should be treated as a whole. After all, health strongly influences personal life: relations and mutual understanding with family, socialization in civil society, and economic difficulties.

A person, being in the service, did not face the problem of finding work. There is always enough of it. And it is a job of a different nature. It forms in you essential qualities and abilities that are in demand here as well. But he has never put together a resume, doesn’t know how to present himself in the best light at an interview, or knows the language used in the typical environment. Many employers are wary of hiring someone with military experience. And the reason for this is health problems. After all, such a candidate can be very unreliable. This turns into a series of successive failures, and the problem is not solved but only worsens. A vicious circle from which it is urgent to get out. Some commissions investigate the physical, social, and psychological problems encountered by post-military adaptation participants in America. We can only hope that this will bear fruit and that things will improve. After all, the situation is also complicated because the female part of the population is increasingly joining the ranks of people in uniform. And all the problems mentioned above apply to them, too.

Returning home is a highly anticipated moment. The harsh reality shattered by meeting your loved ones and wanting to start a new and peaceful life. It is important to remember and understand that you are surrounded by people who care about you, who want to help you. And they will be able to do it without your participation. It is necessary to knock on doors, to find out, to try.

And most importantly, don’t keep quiet. Talk about what you’ve experienced and what’s bothering you. And that’s the first step in your adjustment.

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