View stunning SlideShares in full-screen with the new iOS app!Introducing SlideShare for AndroidExplore all your favorite topics in the SlideShare appGet the SlideShare app to Save for Later — even offline
View stunning SlideShares in full-screen with the new Android app!View stunning SlideShares in full-screen with the new iOS app!
REASON FOR THIS TOPIC
• With the closing of operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, my thoughts were drawn to
the effect the war had on Soldiers, Marines, Airmen and Sailors.
• The media tends to sensationalize PTSD and present it only in a negative light
• In fact, the recent Ft. Hood shooting was partially attributed to PTSD despite evidence
that the shooter never suffered from it
• The media portrays military veterans as all having PTSD and that they could fly off the
handle at any time
FORT HOOD SHOOTER
• Specialist Ivan Lopez, a soldier stationed at Ft. Hood, was the shooter that killed three
and injured 16.
• When they first caught wind of the shooting, the media found he had deployed and
talk immediately began about how he “probably had PTSD.”
• Despite the fact that he had deployed twice, Lopez never showed any signs of PTSD
• In fact, his two deployments were to Egypt and a deployment to Iraq that was cut
• He ever made any claims of PTSD to the VA and never even saw any combat.
WHAT IS PTSD?
• PTSD is a anxiety disorder that occurs after a traumatic event, which, in todays
society, is typically associated with veterans and the GWOT.
• In truth, PTSD can happen after any traumatic event in life, even on the civilian side
HOW DOES IT AFFECT THE BRAIN?
• Based in the hippocampus, amygdala and pre-frontal cortex, PTSD affects decision
making, memory and also includes strong emotions, such as fear, anger and sadness
• When a certain memory is accessed, the brain also goes through the associated
areas in the brain and includes the emotions found in them.
• This can cause certain individuals, not all, to “reenact” what they experienced.
• One of the most common occurrences you hear is when a veteran “attacks”his wife
without realizing it. In his mind he was only defending himself.
WHY IS THIS DISORDER SO FEARED?
• Many people in this country have some form of PTSD, whether from the GWOT or a
similarly traumatic event in their lives.
• The media is only interested in stories that will interest viewers and stories about
veterans combatting PTSD successfully don’t make the evening news.
• But the individual who shot up an Army base after a deployment (that was only four
months long) is scary enough to cover
• In truth, many people have PTSD and lead successful lives.
HOW CAN WE PREVENT PTSD?
• The Army now has “Resiliency Training” which helps soldiers deals with difficult
times in their life. It teaches different methods of thinking and ways to avoid thought
• With some modification, this same training can be applied to prevent PTSD. If you
train your mind to be more resilient and are able to “bounce back” from tough, life
changing experiences, you can help yourself lessen your risk or help manage your
WHAT HAPPENS IF THAT’S NOT ENOUGH?
• With the GWOT coming to a close, the VA has had over 10 years to try and perfect
treatment for PTSD.
• However, its not perfect.
• The more popular treatments involve psychotherapy, behavioral therapy and anti
psychotics like Zoloft and Prozac.
WHAT TO TAKE AWAY FROM THIS
• PTSD isn’t a disease; it’s a disorder.
• Not everyone who suffers from PTSD, especially combat veterans, are prone to
• People who have PTSD are not “broken” and automatically assuming that they are is
• Just because a person deploys doesn’t mean they have PTSD.