PTSD Treatment for Veterans
PTSD Can Cause A Negative Ripple Effect In A Veteran’s Life
Veterans can encounter trauma in the military in a variety of ways. If a veteran was exposed to combat during his or her service, he or she may have witnessed or partaken in intense violence. Whether they were in combat or not, veterans may also experience lingering fears of dangerous situations, such as the possibility of harm by explosive devices or the uncertainty of an ambush, after they return home to safety. They may also experience trauma through the death of their friends who served in the military or the “re-traumatization” of returning home to violent protests, domestic attacks or other dangerous situations. No matter the era of their service, veterans also may feel estranged from the civilian world when they return home. To their families, veterans may seem isolated and irritable, struggling to communicate their needs. If a veteran has symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), he or she may try to cope with emotional pain by misusing prescription painkillers, abusing illegal drugs or drinking excessively. Problems with drugs and alcohol can cause veterans to spiral down a negative path, which all too often results in legal trouble, health concerns and homelessness.
After they return home, past trauma can continue to cause veterans turmoil throughout their daily lives. Intrusive memories and nightmares may make it difficult for a veteran to get a restful night of sleep. They may struggle to connect and communicate in their personal relationships with their partner and other family members. Returning veterans may also find it difficult to hold a steady job because they fear encountering triggers of traumatic memories at work. If veterans feel overwhelmed with a sense of hopelessness, they may lose motivation to go to work, arrive on time or put effort into tasks. If they become homeless, veterans may attempt to find help through the VA, but end up feeling discouraged and confused by the process.
PTSD Is Very Common Among Veterans Of All Eras
In any given year, the VA estimates that PTSD affects 11-20 percent of veterans of various service eras. VA statistics show as many as 30 percent of Vietnam War veterans have experienced PTSD in their lifetime. In addition to combat-related trauma, veterans may also struggle with the lingering effects of trauma related to the death or injury of fellow service members, sexual harassment or assault, societal backlash when they return home and boot camp experiences. It’s also very common for veterans who experienced a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) to struggle with the effects of PTSD. If a veteran has a TBI, he or she often has flashbacks, nightmares and overwhelming memories that are directly linked to the moment of the injury.
If a veteran falls on hard times and becomes homeless, his or her ability to get treatment for PTSD becomes limited. Without a clean legal record, a mailing address, transportation or a safe space to sleep, homeless veterans often feel stuck and unsure where to look for help.
The good news is The Bodhi Battalion offers free PTSD treatment for veterans. Our knowledgeable network of service providers work to help veterans clear past trauma so they can move forward in a fulfilling life.
PTSD Treatment For Veterans Is A Multifaceted Approach To Independence
During safe and engaging PTSD therapy sessions, veterans will work together with professional service providers to develop an individualized plan to find freedom from past trauma. This tailored treatment program will offer veterans a number of different therapy approaches so they can find help that best fits their specific needs.
Our experienced service providers will help veterans uncover hidden triggers to their anxiety, flashbacks and painful memories. Veterans can learn how to identify the thoughts, smells, tastes, images and other sensations that often lead to the overwhelming emotional symptoms of PTSD. They’ll also have the chance to expand their tolerance to external triggers so they can confidently maintain their job goals and fortify their interpersonal relationships.
In sessions, veterans may work through many therapy techniques, including Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy and brainspotting approaches. EMDR and brainspotting can help veterans access and process their memories on a neurobiological level – creating lasting change that can continue to help a veteran throughout his or her entire life.
The Bodhi Battalion looks at the whole individual during PTSD counseling for veterans. For many veterans, that means helping them maintain affordable housing, receive substance abuse treatment, engage with the community and improve their interpersonal relationships. In addition, we can also help veterans with the logistics of building a new life, such as applying for benefits and finding community resources. All of these components make it easier for veterans to overcome their painful memories and resiliently move forward in an independent life.
PTSD can wreak havoc on a veteran’s life, as well as that of the veteran’s family – causing everyone involved to feel pessimistic about the chance for recovery. But the truth is no matter the severity of a veteran’s PTSD, there is always hope to regain stability and find freedom from the pain of past trauma.
Common concerns about PTSD treatment
I don’t want to revisit my past trauma. How can therapy help me?
The distressing thoughts, emotions and sensations related to your traumatic experience probably continue to creep into your life, interrupting your ability to feel like you’ve truly come home. During the Bodhi Battalion’s PTSD treatment sessions, you will not need to revisit the details of your past experiences. Instead, we can focus on building your resilience to flashbacks and painful emotions, all while fostering the components of a well-balanced life. After you spend some time treating your PTSD, you can relieve your mind of lingering thoughts and memories from your past, which can ultimately allow you to spend more time engaging in the activities you enjoy, such as attending events with loved ones or working on your hobbies.
My loved one has already tried to seek treatment, but there was too much red tape.
It’s common for veterans with PTSD to struggle to find affordable treatment through the VA or their health care providers. At the Bodhi Battalion, we aim to make the process for receiving PTSD treatment for veterans as easy as possible, while also streamlining the process for getting other necessary assistance, such as housing, transportation, substance abuse treatment and VA case management. Well-rounded care is an integral part to finding relief from PTSD and maintaining an independent and fulfilling life.
I’m glad that my loved one can participate in therapy sessions for PTSD, but what about the needs of our family?
Serving the needs of our veterans also means helping them foster a positive family life. We recognize that a veteran’s military service and trauma has affected his or her family as well. The Bodhi Battalion is happy to assist family members of veterans who are in need of therapy to reconnect with their veterans and help them maintain meaningful relationships.
Find Relief From Military Trauma
If you are interested in learning more about seeking treatment for PTSD, please contact us. We are happy to answer any questions you may have about the treatment process, as well as other ways we can help you or your veteran get necessary assistance