Active service members and veterans both continue to face many challenges through daily life as they continue to put their physical well-being and mental health on the line while on duty. However, it is common for many veterans to also bring these challenges home, even after being successfully discharged from active duty. The pervasive life-threatening nature of military life can leave many veterans continuing to cope with the effects of trauma and PTSD in civilian life. Addressing the impact of trauma, panic, and PTSD on veterans is paramount as it not only continues to affect the well-being of those who have lived through such traumatic experiences but also the families that support them.
The Many Forms of Trauma
There are many ways in which trauma can manifest. Life-threatening situations such as armed conflict, natural disasters, car accidents, and more are all common and intense ways in which a person may experience trauma and a change in their perspective. Difficult medical diagnoses, the loss of loved ones, childhood abuse, sexual assault, violence, and more can all have profound and continued effects on an individual.
However, veterans can also be exposed to many unique traumas that others may not commonly be exposed to, and may even face intense traumatic situations many times throughout multiple deployments. The life-threatening stress of navigating an active warzone, survivor’s guilt and the trauma of losing brothers and sisters in arms, the prevalence of military sexual trauma (MST), and other unique situations can all continue to impact the daily lives of active service members and veterans alike.
Overcoming these challenges is paramount for those navigating their own traumatic experiences. However, veterans navigating traumatic experiences can also indirectly interfere with the well-being of their loved ones. Therefore, pursuing professional treatment for veterans to overcome the effects of trauma can be paramount for creating a healthier approach to daily life for veterans and their families alike.
Children in military families have a unique childhood. For information on how our treatment centers in Hawaii can help, call to speak to us at (866) 390-5070.More info
The Impact of Trauma
Trauma can manifest differently for each person, both in the traumatic experiences they are exposed to and the symptoms that manifest as a result. For many, trauma comes with daily implications until professionally addressed, including:
However, these impacts can also have ramifications for veterans’ families upon their return. Exploring professional treatment to address trauma among veterans and its effects on veteran families is paramount.
Trauma’s Impact on the Family
Trauma can affect families in many ways, with the traumatic experiences veterans experience having even more unique effects. Trauma’s effects on veterans’ moods can fundamentally impact the household atmosphere, with pervasive feelings of anxiety, fear, and anger permeating the walls. Not only can this make it difficult to foster effective healing, but it can also have profound effects on the mood of others, with feelings of anxiety, depression, anger, and resentment all being common among family members as a result.
Some of the most common and profound ways in which families can be impacted by a loved one’s trauma include:
- Changes in familial dynamics or established systems
- Shared feelings of guilt, helplessness, hopelessness, and depression
- Compromised communication skills, especially when informed by mood swings or experiential disconnects between worldviews
- Financial stresses
Likewise, it is also possible for veterans to introduce the family to “vicarious trauma.” Vicarious trauma is a form of trauma that impacts those closest to a person, even if they have not experienced the traumatic event firsthand, through stories, photos, or other secondary exposures. For example, listening to harrowing war stories or witnessing the effects of PTSD can all have profound effects on the mentalities and perspectives of loved ones listening to such stories, and thus experiencing their own form of trauma as a result. Supports and families of veterans trying to foster healing can often be exposed to this kind of trauma, with effects on their own mental and emotional health.
Each of these challenges can change the atmosphere of a particular household, introducing many difficult feelings, compromising communication, and bringing stress. Trauma is not something that only affects a single person, and families of veterans may also have to address difficult feelings of anxiety, depression, and more, with children and spouses all with their own needs during this time.
Professional Treatment for Addressing the Impact of Trauma
There is nothing easy about overcoming trauma and its continued effects on veterans. The professional treatment available at Hawaii Island Recovery is instrumental in helping families and veterans alike address the continued impact of trauma in daily life. Establishing communication strategies to challenge feelings of resentment or exhaustion among families and instilling effective practices for veterans to navigate flashbacks while creating a community of peers is just the beginning of an effective treatment program.
While unfortunate, it is common for veterans to unintentionally expose families to a degree of trauma or anxiety. Hawaii Island Recovery’s dedicated treatment centers in Hawaii are prepared to address the impact of trauma on the family as veterans transition to a fulfilling civilian life alongside those that matter most.
Trauma has profound and lasting effects on both individuals and entire families, with whole households tasked with overcoming its destructive effects. Dedicated, professional treatment centers in Hawaii can be instrumental in creating an effective plan to address trauma and its extended impacts. Hawaii Island Recovery is committed to more than just creating an individualized treatment plan, but instead adopts a culture of healing for veterans and their families with communal healing, a supportive atmosphere, and dedication to holistic physical, emotional, and spiritual healing. Our proven and effective treatment programs and strategies can each be customized to fit the needs of veterans and their families while overcoming the challenges of trauma at home. For more information, call us at (866) 390-5070.