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Sponsored by: The Veterans Site

Combat PTSD.

You've seen those words before, on news tickers, in Hollywood films, on trending tabs, even on the covers of scientific journals. You've been seeing those words for years now, haven't you?

What you may not have seen, or heard, is that Combat PTSD is the leading contributor to a staggering number: twenty-two. Twenty-two. According to a study conducted by Veterans Affairs in 2013, twenty-two United States veterans commit suicide every day.

Since the 2013 study, no study has found the suicide rate to be declining. Which means that we aren't doing a good enough job for our veterans. To combat this trend, the VA needs to change and improve. Quite simply, the programs currently offered by the VA-- including medication, psychotherapy and group therapy-- are not what every veteran currently needs. There cannot be a one-size-fits-all model to treat Combat PTSD.

Combat PTSD is both a psychological and physiological condition. The stress put on the sufferer's brain actually changes its physical landscape, including a 5-10% decrease in gray matter, the part of the brain responsible for relaying neurological messages to and from the body. Also affected are the hippocampus (short-term memory) and the prefrontal cortex (emotional response).

What if there were ways to not only repair what has been lost, but ways that our veterans could find peace? What if, instead of a telephone hotline and a refillable orange bottle, there were programs that granted them access to garden spaces, and to the arts, and to exercise therapy like yoga or running? What if there was a way to save veterans' lives?

Sign the petition below to tell Secretary of Veteran Affairs to explore other options to treat Combat PTSD.

Sign Here

Dear Secretary of Veteran Affairs,

According to a study conducted by Veterans Affairs in 2013, twenty-two United States veterans commit suicide every day. Twenty-two. Considering that there are now more programs for suffering veterans than there ever have been, it's hard to believe that Combat PTSD is still the leading factor that drives veterans to suicide. Together, we need to make a change. We should start with where the most veterans go for help: the VA.

The problem is not that the VA doesn't offer help; the problem is that the programs currently offered by the VA are not what every veteran needs. The VA's programs that address Combat PTSD – including medication, psychotherapy and group therapy– may work for some returning service members. For others, though, the current model just doesn't work.

Some veterans instead need something like Yoga Warriors International, who has had success in 'retraining the fight-or-flight response' so that when confronting a situation that triggers their memories, they’re able to remain calm.

Others may need the physical act of running, which a study done at Cambridge University reported to grow gray matter, a crucial part of the brain that can sometimes decrease with the onset of Combat PTSD.

Some veterans may need the catharsis that can come from writing, painting, or playing a piece of music. Others may need something like Veterans Healing Farm, where veterans escape the noisy world and are allowed to put their hands in the soil they fought so hard to defend.

Having the VA act as a bridge to these programs would be beneficial, but think about if the VA offered these programs. Veterans could be excited to go to the VA. Veterans could excited to go to therapy. Peace could be found. Pride could be restored. Progress toward having that 'twenty-two' become “zero” could be jumpstarted by the VA’s efforts to revitalize the offered programs to treat Combat PTSD.

Thank you.


Petition Signatures

Feb 13, 2018 Erik Bjarnar
Feb 13, 2018 (Name not displayed)
Feb 12, 2018 Mark Lungo
Feb 12, 2018 Cody Lee
Feb 12, 2018 Sara Perron
Feb 11, 2018 Amy Bisignani
Feb 11, 2018 Jacqueline Geoffroy
Feb 10, 2018 Jeanne Cambouris NO ONE in the Country is owed a higher level of care than our Vets!
Feb 9, 2018 James Brzozkiewicz
Feb 9, 2018 Anita Phaneuf
Feb 9, 2018 (Name not displayed)
Feb 9, 2018 Barbara Daly Please help
Feb 9, 2018 Sue Popa
Feb 8, 2018 Crystal Fish
Feb 8, 2018 Sheila Todd
Feb 8, 2018 John Doucette
Feb 8, 2018 Wendy Bise
Feb 8, 2018 Ellen O'Connor
Feb 8, 2018 Sandra Tucker
Feb 8, 2018 Mary Sier
Feb 8, 2018 cathy mitchamore
Feb 8, 2018 Evelyn Kortright
Feb 7, 2018 Donna Selquist
Feb 7, 2018 Ruth Rogers
Feb 7, 2018 Teresa Foster
Feb 7, 2018 Teresa Foster
Feb 5, 2018 JAMES DI SARNO I suffer from PTSD and Agent Orange. 1966-1970.
Feb 5, 2018 CATHERINE MOLLIGI The VA needs to look at all PTSD treatments. Not all respond to same treatment.
Feb 4, 2018 Charles Lamb
Feb 4, 2018 miriam feehily
Feb 4, 2018 Sandy Ubelhart If the VA hosptialscant help then all other hospitals, mental health centers should .
Feb 3, 2018 Michael Longsworth
Feb 3, 2018 nancy charest Married to a Marine Vietnam Veteran. It's real and sad.
Feb 3, 2018 Stephanie Mitchell
Feb 1, 2018 Russell Jackson
Jan 31, 2018 Johanna Stubblefield
Jan 27, 2018 Bennie Davis
Jan 25, 2018 (Name not displayed)
Jan 25, 2018 Synthia Coplin
Jan 25, 2018 (Name not displayed)
Jan 25, 2018 Valerie Graham
Jan 25, 2018 Kevin Dahl
Jan 24, 2018 Walter Johnson
Jan 23, 2018 Joyce Davis
Jan 21, 2018 Charlotte Woodard
Jan 20, 2018 (Name not displayed)
Jan 19, 2018 Donna Bridges Bozeman
Jan 19, 2018 Rama Bharadwaj
Jan 15, 2018 cara frame
Jan 14, 2018 Sue Ellen Lupien

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