• Sat. Mar 2nd, 2024

The Unseen Wounds of War: Journalist Reflects on Providing Mental Health Support to Soldiers and their Families.


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

As a journalist, I have had the privilege of working with soldiers who have experienced traumatic events. One such soldier came to my care and had an older brother dealing with PTSD. The family was going through significant emotional upheaval, and the parents were understandably concerned about another son being exposed to traumatic events.

I spent countless hours speaking with the family to understand their concerns and provide them with information on how to help themselves and their son. My relationship with the family touched my heart deeply, and I will never forget that moment.

The soldier himself also needed assistance, and after a few days of talking with me, he was in a better condition, which was a huge relief for his loved ones. However, the sharp transition between the intensity of working with soldiers in the army and returning to other commitments at the hospital has been challenging for me. I am also preparing for a final test of my internship in psychiatry, which has been compressed into a very short period due to reserve duty.

It is becoming increasingly evident that we do not know enough about treating combat stress and trauma. Our experience in providing assistance to people who have experienced long-term trauma is much greater than our knowledge of providing first aid in such cases as research is scarce.

If I could improve something in the way mental assistance is administered to soldiers today, it would be to ensure that the availability of mental health treatments remains consistent, especially for reservists who are discharged and need continued care.

After such a long period of fighting, I have learned that there is a real concern for the mental health of soldiers among their commanders and peers. However, this does not detract from their fighting spirit or operational activity. It’s essential to remember that when a person is recruited into the reserves, their entire family undergoes a significant transition that can affect their mental well-being.

In conclusion, I believe that it is crucial for society to remember that trauma is a national issue and offer acceptance, containment, and assistance to soldiers experiencing mental distress. It’s vital to increase the availability of mental health services for all individuals who continue to suffer from a mental disorder as a result of their service.

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