When some veterans return from war or a military conflict, they may develop post-traumatic stress disorder weeks or even months after the event. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs notes that this mental health issue occurs when the stress, fear or anxiety veterans feel connected to a traumatic event does not lessen over time or if they develop triggers that take them back to that time and place of the incident.
Learning a few facts about PTSD may help those applying for benefits to do so with more confidence and possibly streamline the application process as well.
1. PTSD reduces everyday functionality
Veterans who suffer from PTSD may find that multiple triggers and flashbacks to the traumatic event can reduce their ability to function on a daily basis. For example, they may find themself constantly distracted or preoccupied with their thoughts and what triggers them, which could affect their ability to function at their job or interact with family.
2. Traumatic events can vary
Most traumatic events that cause PTSD in veterans fall into different categories. In fact, not all cases of PTSD stem from military events. Other possible incidents include sexual assault, a naturally-occurring event like an earthquake or viewing others become injured, whether military or civilian.
3. Only a doctor can diagnose PTSD
Before any veterans can apply for benefits connected to PTSD, they must receive a diagnosis from a licensed physician or mental health professional. Speaking with a doctor regarding any symptoms connected with this disorder is usually the most efficient first step to take, especially for those veterans who use unhealthy coping skills to try and function.
Any event connected with PTSD must occur during a veteran’s active service before he or she attempts to apply for disability funds.