Military Culture, Mental Health and Law Enforcement


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Presented by: Deloria R. Wilson, Ph.D.
Warrior Resiliency Program

Published in: Health & Medicine
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  • I work with Veterans in a program whose mission is to aid the Veteran toward re-integration in the community, with the skills they feel they need to make it happen, to improve their quality of life. But also to recognize their self-management, and not dependence, will achieve more meaningful outcomes.
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  • I work with military programs that provide treatment for combat related stress conditions (i.e., PTSD, depression, anxiety, etc..). Please feel free to contact me if you have information or experiences you would like to share regarding this area of treatment. There is a much good work taking place with much more work to be done. I am dedicated to learning as much as I can about the system in which care is provided so that resources, products, and services can be developed and utilized by treatment programs working with our Warriors.
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Military Culture, Mental Health and Law Enforcement

  1. 1. Military Culture, Mental Health and Law Enforcement<br />Crisis Intervention Team International Conference<br />1 June 2010<br />Deloria R. Wilson, Ph.D.<br />Warrior Resiliency Program<br />San Antonio Texas<br />210-424-8946<br />
  2. 2. Disclaimer<br />Many slides were derived from staff at the<br />Center for Deployment Psychology (CDP) and <br />other Experts.<br />The views and opinions expressed in this <br />presentation are solely those of the author and <br />do not reflect an endorsement by the U.S. <br />Government, DoD, Department of the Army or<br />the Warrior Resiliency Program.<br />
  3. 3. Military Culture<br />Some similarities with Law Enforcement <br />
  4. 4. Military and Law Enforcement<br />
  5. 5. Culture-Similarities<br />Service often before self<br />Seeking challenge<br />Emotional regulation<br />Multiple exposure to high stress situations<br />
  6. 6.
  7. 7.
  8. 8. Military Culture-Uniqueness<br />Variation across services<br />Variation with AFSC, MOS, etc. (jobs)<br />Variation in combat exposure<br />Subcultures<br />
  9. 9. Combat Stress and PTSD<br />
  10. 10. A Continuum of Combat Reactions<br />Mission Event<br />Combat Stress<br />Acute Stress<br />PTSD<br />Combat<br />Ready<br />Adjustment<br />Adjustment<br />
  11. 11. A Continuum of Combat Reactions<br />Mission Event<br />Combat Stress<br />Acute Stress<br />PTSD<br />Combat<br />Ready<br />Adjustment<br />Adjustment<br />
  12. 12. Typical Post Deployment Adjustment Issues<br />Problems sleeping<br />Irritability/Anger<br />More (assertive) driving?<br />Disturbing dreams/images<br />Feeling out of place<br />Physical/Emotional/Cognitive Fatigue<br />Range of emotions including numbness<br />
  13. 13. Yellow Flags<br />Increased drinking <br />More withdrawn<br />Some family difficulties<br />Reduced work performance<br />Occasionally late to work/appointments<br />Hyper-vigilance / arousal <br />Discipline Problems<br />
  14. 14. Red Flags<br />Alcohol Abuse/Dependence<br />Behavior requiring paperwork<br />Signs for Depression/Anxiety<br />Psychotic Behavior<br />Signs of suicidal ideation<br />Consistently unable to control anger<br />Increasing withdrawal and isolation<br />
  15. 15. PTSD Symptoms Impact onSocial Support<br />PTSD and associated problems can reduce available social support<br />Emotional numbing<br />Detachment <br />Hostility and aggression<br />Distrust of others<br />Social problem solving deficits<br />As symptoms persist, individuals may tire of providing support or exhaust resources<br />CDP<br />
  16. 16. Relation between PTSD and Social Support<br />One of the strongest predictors of recovery following trauma is social support<br />Deterioration of perceived social support over time may contribute to increased symptoms <br />In general, families provide a primary source of social support, with intimate partners typically the chief source<br />
  17. 17. Other Types of Deployment Stress<br />
  18. 18. Deployment Cycle and Family Considerations<br />
  19. 19. Why is the family important?<br />Each gear impacts the ability of <br />the service member to complete the<br />Mission.<br />
  20. 20. Stressors in the Deployment Cycle<br />Pre-deployment<br />Notification<br />Preparation<br />Training<br />Return from Deployment<br />Reunion<br />Reintegration<br />Deployment<br />Departure<br />Sustainment<br />Combat and conflict<br />
  21. 21. Pre-Deployment Stressors<br />Preparedness<br />Shifting expectations<br />Changes in family dynamics<br />Anticipation of threats<br />Perception of Mission<br />Lack of information/Rumors<br />Briefing by David Riggs, June 2007<br />
  22. 22. Pre-Deployment Stressors - Spouses<br />Confusion<br />Denial<br />Resentment<br />Arguing<br />Worrying<br />Planning<br />Briefing by Doug Lehman, May 2008<br />
  23. 23. Pre-Deployment Stressors - Kids<br /><ul><li> Confusion
  24. 24. Regression
  25. 25. Anger Outbursts
  26. 26. Sadness
  27. 27. Surprise
  28. 28. Guilt
  29. 29. Behavioral problems</li></ul>Briefing by Doug Lehman, May 2008<br />
  30. 30. Pre-Deployment Stressors - Adolescents<br />“I don’t care”<br />Fear of rejection<br />Denial of feelings<br />Anger<br />Higher value on friends<br />Briefing by Doug Lehman, May 2008<br />
  31. 31. Stressors in the Deployment Cycle<br />Pre-deployment<br />Notification<br />Preparation<br />Training<br />Return from Deployment<br />Reunion<br />Reintegration<br />Deployment<br />Departure<br />Sustainment<br />Combat and conflict<br />
  32. 32. Stressors in the Deployment Cycle<br />Pre-deployment<br />Notification<br />Preparation<br />Training<br />Return from Deployment<br />Reunion<br />Reintegration<br />Deployment<br />Departure<br />Sustainment<br />Combat and conflict<br />
  33. 33. Common Stressors SM<br />CDP<br />Editors Charles Figley and William Nash, Combat Stress Injury (2007)<br />
  34. 34. Change in Mindset: SM<br />CDP<br />
  35. 35. Family Re-Adjustmentcan be like driving in San Antonio<br />
  36. 36. It can be hard to figure out how to merge safely<br />
  37. 37. Many times families will confuse normal adjustment issues for serious problems or vice versa.<br />
  38. 38. Most service members and families expect that the service member or the family will remain unchanged.<br />
  39. 39. Knowing the<br />difference between <br />expected adjustment <br />issues and mental <br />health problems often <br />depends on time.<br />
  40. 40. “IF YOU WENT TO WAR AND WEREN’T CHANGED, YOU WERE CRAZY BEFORE YOU LEFT.”<br />Ch. Morris, Minnesotata<br />
  41. 41. Changes for Family<br />Family has…<br />Service Member’s Return can…<br />• New routines<br />• New responsibilities <br />• More independence<br /> and confidence<br />• Made many sacrifices<br />• Worried, felt lonely<br />• Gone through<br /> milestones that were<br /> missed<br />• Interrupt routine<br />• Disrupt space<br />• Throw off decision making<br />• Cause family to walk on tip<br /> toes<br />• Not make everything perfect <br />• Not replace the sacrifices<br /> and missed milestones<br />CDP<br />
  42. 42. Community Partnering to Maximize Positive Outcome<br />
  43. 43. Common Issues during Crises<br />Not necessarily dissimilar than general civilian population<br />Domestic issues/ Relationship issues<br />Financial problems<br />Legal Issues<br />Circumstances may be different<br />May not have family nearby<br />Possible exposure to violence in theater<br />Injured/Wounded Service Member<br />
  44. 44. Get to know<br />Military Leadership <br />Military Police<br />Military Mental Health/Medical<br />VA and other veteran’s resources<br />On Line and Community Resources<br />
  45. 45. They May Be Able to Help With<br />Information about service member and or family<br />Information about what member’s unit has gone through<br />Links to family and other resources<br />Possibly medical and personal history<br />Resources to collaborate with training <br />Follow-through after an event<br />
  46. 46. Discussion and Questions<br />