Tagged: combat

New approach to help military families with young children

November 20th, 2008 in Military 0 comments

For the first time, the Department of Defense has chosen a School of Social Work to develop a four-year program to help returning soldiers from Iraq and Afghanistan who suffer from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and their young families, particularly those with children under five years old who are in the critical stage of development. Led by Ellen DeVoe, assistant professor at the School of Social Work, the goal is to both examine the impact of deployment stress and combat trauma on military families with young children and then develop long-lasting approaches to deal with issues such as separation and reassimilation.

“We are really focusing on the reintegration piece and what that means for children and parents, and how soldiers can come back into a familiy after they’ve been gone from 6 to 18 months.

“If you think about what that length of separation means for a child from infancy to five years old, they don’t really have a way to understand where this person went, even though we tell them and show them pictures.”

Support for Troops, After Combat

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PTSD and women in combat

October 20th, 2008 in Military 0 comments

Of the 190,000 military women who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan since 2001, 20 percent of them will likely develop post-traumatic stress disorder, (PTSD) a debilitating, life-threatening anxiety disorder. With women returning from combat deployments in greater numbers than ever before in U.S. history, the Department of Veteran Affairs is scrambling to meet a need whose scope is still unknown.

Boston University professors are among the lead investigators of current research being conducted at the VA’s National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder:

  • Dr. Terence Keane, professor of psychiatry and director of the Behavioral Sciences Division of the National Center for PTSD, developed many of today’s most widely used PTSD assessment tools.
  • Dr. Patricia Resick, a professor of psychiatry and psychology and director of the Women’s Health Services Division of the National Center for PTSD, is researching why women develop PTSD at more than twice the rate of men. She also developed cognitive processing therapy (CPT), a dramatically successful treatment for rape victims and battered women.
  • Amy Street, an assistant professor in psychiatry, leads a VA support team devoted to military sexual trauma (MST). 20% of women report experiencing MST, compared with 1% of men.
  • Suzanne Pineles, an assistant professor or psychiatry and clinical coordinator of the VA’s Women’s Stress Disorder Treatment Team, is exploring the possibility that women may have a biological susceptibility to PTSD.

Read the full article in the Fall 2008 issue of Bostonia.

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