WHY PTSD SHOULD BE PTSI
POST TRAUMATIC STRESS INJURY
PTSD is a chemical change in the brain. It has absolutely nothing to do with a person’s supposed mental weakness or flaw in their character.
Harvard Medical has published several featured articles showing MRI scans confirming there is a chemical change, which makes the person feel off balance and completely out of sync. A recent article in the Washington Post, (Nov. 10, 2009), “Scanning invisible damage of PTSD, brain blasts” the article states, “Powerful scans are letting doctors watch just how the brain changes in veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder and concussion-like brain injuries — signature damage of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.”Whether you are a veteran or have family members who served, you have to recognize PTSD is a physical wound not any different than being shot or losing a part of your body in a bomb blast. It must be treated and talked about as a wound of the flesh and help must be suggested on the same basis as a wound that bleeds. As a soldier will attest any, reference to mental issues in the personnel file is a career killer. When a superior suggests seeking help from a mental health counselor the response is an automatic "No!" However, research has shown seeking help for an injury is received positively...and with a willing attitude. The word "Disorder" in PTSD has that negative connotation which Post Traumatic Stress "Injury" does not. A supervisor ordering a soldier to seek help for the injury war brings to many will make a significant difference. News reports were filled in 2009 of a career soldier in Iraq being sent for mental counseling and ending up so distressed about possibly losing his career, he lost control, took a gun and shot 5 fellow soldiers. One has to question whether this soldier would have reacted the same way if his directive would have suggested seeking help for his injury of the brain. Civilians may not understand the significance of such a minor change in terminology, however veterans will understand and current solders may find a resolution to an issue that has never had a possible encouraging outcome.