How I Achieved Maximum Success with Charities

Tips for Helping a Veteran with PTSD

The role of a veteran’s family and friends is crucial, especially during difficult moments. Usually, people who are close to the veteran will be the first to notice if there are any problems.

If a person you love is struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), know that it can be cured, and, with your help, they can reclaim their old life. Spouses, partners, family members and friends have seen this happen many times before, after doing what they could to help their loved one defeat PTSD.

Below are five ways you can support a veteran with PTSD:

1. Be ready to provide help.

First off, be aware that whatever your loved one is dealing with because of PTSD is out of their control. So if you feel like they’re being so touchy or volatile, just understand where they’re coming from and don’t make it worse. If you have to do more of the household tasks, let it be. You can never help someone with PTSD unless you are ready.

2. Educate yourself about treatment options.

Counseling and medication are two established approaches for treating PTSD. In recent years, researchers have brought forth new knowledge in the disorder’s causes and potential treatment. If you have more knowledge on the subject, your ability to help your loved one improves.

3. Encourage your loved one to talk with other veterans in a similar position.

Your local VA can assign a Peer Specialist to counsel your loved one individually, with the family, or in a group therapy with other veterans who also have PTSD. A Peer Specialist is an individual who has a mental health condition, but has received training and certification to help others struggling with their own mental problems. Just connect with your local VA and they will help you explore options and resources.

4. Hire a coach.

Yes, you can bring in a professional coach who can help your loved one through the entire ordeal, and in some cases, this can even be offered for free. It’s often difficult for family members to get a person with the disorder to talk, but a professional will know exactly what to do to gain the veteran’s trust and confidence. These coaches are experienced and trained, so it’s no surprise that veterans with the disorder have a better chance of responding positively to treatment when they are in the hands of experts.

5. Encourage your loved one to help themselves.

Lastly, encourage the veteran to continue to practice self-care on an everyday basis. For example, download some PTSD self-help tools on their mobile phone or laptop, such as apps that provide tips for managing symptoms. Self-care gives people a feeling of being in control, and that is something these veterans need to re-learn slowly but surely.

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