The first time my husband deployed was just a few short weeks after we got married. We had a son who was three and a half at the time, yet the three of us had never actually lived together. To say we received more than our share of doubts that our family would “make it” would be putting it lightly.
Blog posts with the tag "Military Culture"
The Center for Deployment Psychology Summer Institute: Preparing for a Psychology Career in the Military (CDPSI) is an intensive five-day course held annually in June in Bethesda, Maryland.
I have been a Navy spouse for over twenty years. During that time, I have witnessed first-hand the changes experienced by military families in many aspects of their lives. While military families will always experience certain normative stressors, the tools they have to navigate these stressors is ever-changing. Experiences such as moving, frequent separations, deployment, and awareness of risks involved in military service are a common thread among families. However, the way these normative stressors are experienced, understood, and addressed continues to evolve.
When one thinks about substance use or addiction in the military, one’s mind may automatically go to alcohol. Although the prevalence of alcohol use and abuse can be considerable, we would be remiss to overlook the historical use and current trends in use of two other legally and socially sanctioned substances within our military population: tobacco and caffeine.
A study of non-treatment-seeking infantry soldiers who had been deployed to Afghanistan or Iraq Tobin, et al (2014) found that 44.0% reported chronic pain (pain for more than 90 days). Of those chronic pain suffers, 48.3% reported symptoms for over one year. Additionally, 15.1% of this non-treatment-seeking sample was using opioids. The comparable rates of civilian chronic pain and opioid use at the time of this study were 26.0% and 4.0%. Alarmingly, 44.1% of soldiers reporting opioid use also reported mild to no pain in the past month and 5.6% reported no pain (Tobin, et al, 2014).