Consequences of Serving as a Soldier by Jacqueline Perez c/o 14

HOUSTON_In new research posted by JAMA Psychiatry on Monday researchers indicate that one in ten soldiers qualified for having a disorder called intermittent explosive disorder, more than five times the rate found among regular population.

This disorder triggers impulses and mood making these people act on suicidal urges. The research contains five years of government and military research and also includes anonymous questionnaires given to active soldiers. The research began back in 2008 when the rate of suicides among soldiers increased above civilian rates in America. But how does this affect us back at home is the true question, is there something being done to stop this conflict?

The research indicates that in 2009 the Army invested in a program for its 1.1 million members but it was found ineffective, the course was supposed to make the soldiers’ mentally stronger. So no there’s nothing being done to improve the quality of their mental health once they serve in the military. This situation also affects the family of the veterans when they attempt to resume their lives and then begin to have issues due to the mental instability of their husbands, fathers, and sons.

I think this issue should be really taken into concern because many young adults that have issues back at home join the service thinking that they are finding an escape, but really don’t know what they are getting into. I personally know three people who have served in the Afghanistan and Iraq wars and I could clearly see that they are not mentally stable.

Ironically enough all three of them are heavy smokers. I know that two of them also drink alcohol on a regular basis. I think they use these habits to not only keep themselves busy and occupied but maybe to forget the trauma that they lived during war. I don’t see the army as a positive option because many lose their lives and the ones that do come home are mentally unhealthy, it seems like they are frustrated and can’t continue to live a regular life.

I know one of the veterans closely he is 29 years old and has trouble sleeping at night. I asked why he didn’t he sleep at night and only at day time he said he had nightmares of war scenes and other memories that he didn’t want to talk about. I feel like it’s a bigger issue than what people make it seem and seems crazy that we haven’t figured out how to keep the people that put their life on the line for us healthy in the year 2014.


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