When I was an active duty Air Force psychologist, I learned early on in my career the importance of working closely with active duty Chaplains. In fact, Chaplains and behavioral-health providers often served on several base-level committees together focused on community initiatives. We collaborated regularly on population health-based suicide prevention efforts and crisis response following traumatic events, as well as taught relationship enhancement workshops together. I believe that caring for our Service members takes all hands on deck (to use a Navy saying).
Blog posts with the tag "Treatment"
Stigma against people with mental health conditions has a significant impact that extends beyond stereotypes. Fellow CDP'er Dr. Paula Dominici’s blog article a few weeks ago detailed some specific ways Service members with mental health conditions are affected by social perceptions about their fitness for duty, as well as how their own self perceptions impede help seeking and negatively impact emotional wellbeing.
In the wake of Kate Spade’s and Anthony Bourdain’s suicides last month and the news surrounding their deaths, I can’t help but wonder if stigma about getting mental health care may have deterred these talented individuals from seeking the help they deserved. These tragic events also led me to rethink stigma and its impact on Service members and Veterans.
June is PTSD Awareness Month. So I decided to dip into the research to get a sense of how “aware” people are about PTSD. One thing I discovered: awareness is likely insufficient for the changes needed to adequately address the problem that many with PTSD do not recognize they have a behavioral health condition that requires treatment to avoid short- and long-term problems. Ideally, everyone should be able to recognize someone who is traumatized and, as with suicide, talk with them in an empathic manner to encourage them to get help.
In late 2017, the Department of Veterans Affairs in conjunction with the Department of Defense published an update to their practice guidelines for the management of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). This two-part blog will highlight the major recommendations of the new practice guideline: part 1 will focus on recommendations for screening and assessment and part 2 will focus on treatment considerations. Although we hope that these blogs help to clarify the major elements of the new guideline, we strongly suggest that all clinicians review the guideline for themselves. The full guideline as well as the Clinician Summary and Pocket Guide can all be viewed and downloaded in PDF format here.