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Goal: 30,000 Progress: 13,930
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

Aug 14, 2018 Haley Svec
Aug 14, 2018 Susan Hogarth
Aug 10, 2018 (Name not displayed) Therapy pets work too.
Aug 7, 2018 John Dalla
Aug 7, 2018 Amy Smardz
Aug 7, 2018 Lisa Delabre
Aug 7, 2018 Casey Phillips
Aug 6, 2018 rebecca Beals
Aug 5, 2018 Robert Ortiz
Aug 1, 2018 Lynne potts
Jul 29, 2018 Lori Clayton
Jul 24, 2018 Christine Johnson
Jul 21, 2018 Theresa James
Jul 19, 2018 Christina Bernard
Jul 19, 2018 Jacky Chapman
Jul 17, 2018 Dixie Pleska
Jul 15, 2018 Judi Putnam
Jul 15, 2018 Alicja Bożek
Jul 15, 2018 Rolanda shells
Jul 12, 2018 Patricia Denton
Jul 11, 2018 Carl E. French No soldier should have to die after serving their country. They are too valuable to us. This loss is unbearable.
Jul 9, 2018 Gail McKenzie The VA must be more attentive to the varied needs of our veterans.
Jul 9, 2018 Terri Hughes
Jul 9, 2018 (Name not displayed) Everybody needs to know there are people who care, who will do anything to help - Signing this with a grateful heart for you & the love in this world <3
Jul 9, 2018 (Name not displayed) Thank you for exploring other options to help PTSD sufferers and their families!
Jul 8, 2018 (Name not displayed) My husband is a Vietnam Veteran and a retired MSG of 24 years and I see that he has gotten worse since retiring. Pls help find other options to help these Veterans.
Jul 7, 2018 (Name not displayed) My husband is a Vietnam Combat Veteran who most recently has had some relief from PTSD symptoms using Mindfulness Training. It is very effective for PTSD and does not require the use of drugs at all. - just training.
Jul 7, 2018 Pamela Roberts My dad is a Vietnam vet with PTSD and needs other options beside meds to cope. They served this country now it is high this country serve them!
Jul 4, 2018 Leah Helmer
Jul 4, 2018 (Name not displayed)
Jul 4, 2018 Deborah Royal
Jul 3, 2018 Julie Morales del Castillo
Jul 1, 2018 Sandra Glavey Help those who served their country!!!
Jun 29, 2018 James Thrasher
Jun 27, 2018 Beverly Rector
Jun 27, 2018 Kelly Dickey
Jun 27, 2018 Ethelyn Barksdale
Jun 26, 2018 Michael Crowden
Jun 25, 2018 Al Moorhouse
Jun 25, 2018 Larry McMullen
Jun 24, 2018 Teresa Kemp
Jun 22, 2018 Teresa Smith
Jun 21, 2018 (Name not displayed)
Jun 21, 2018 Kristin Conrad
Jun 21, 2018 Teresa Cochran Service dogs are also of immense help.
Jun 15, 2018 Nancy Wilson We owe them Everything they need or want!
Jun 14, 2018 Donna Sherman
Jun 14, 2018 Mary sunderhauf
Jun 14, 2018 ANGELA WATSON

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