The Name Game: Is PTSD To Blame?

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In today’s world, the staggering amount of post-deployment suicides outnumbers the deaths from combat. The 80% spike in military suicides has Terry Stawar wondering, is there anything we can do to change that statistic?

One notion is to drop the term “disorder” from PTSD to encourage more veterans to seek help. Could removing the term “disorder” from PTSD lower the post-deployment suicide rate? As a licensed mental health and clinical addictions counselor and a certified psychiatric rehab practitioner, Stawar further examines the idea and the results it could yield.

Stawar’s article “PTSD: What’s in a Name?” features a survey taken by the National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare that cites stigma as one of the four most serious roadblocks that prevent veterans from getting treatment for PTSD. The other roadblocks are access to care, long distances, and lack of family involvement. Even the military is in favor of swapping out the term “disorder” with “injury.”

Changing the name can reduce the stigma associated with it but there’s never a guarantee. Instead, as mental health providers we need to focus on the recovery model. Our veterans have sacrificed their lives for our freedom and in turn, we need to really focus on offering the best care available.

The Villa Orlando and Pasadena Villa’s Smoky Mountain Lodge are adult intensive psychiatric residential treatment centers for clients with serious mental illnesses. We also provide other individualized therapy programs, step-down residential programs, and less intensive mental health services, such as Community Residential Homes, Supportive Housing, Day Treatment Programs and Life Skills training. Pasadena Villa’s Outpatient Center in Raleigh, North Carolina offers partial hospitalization (PHP) and an intensive outpatient program (PHP). If you or someone you know may need mental health services, please complete our contact form or call us at 407-574-5190 for more information.




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