Many people associate post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) with the image of veterans returning from war. After living through some of the most intense, emotionally exhausting times of their lives, many vets return mentally scarred. Unfortunately, the civilian life they return to doesn’t match the pace or camaraderie they were used to in the military, making it easier for emotional scars to show. Working with PTSD can be an unexpected challenge for many veterans rejoining life outside of the military.
Recovery Ranch Tennessee has a PTSD treatment center that focuses on healing and long-term success so that working with PTSD is more accessible. If you or someone you love is struggling with their mental health after a traumatic experience, we may be able to help. Get started today by calling 1.844.876.7680.
What Is PTSD?
PTSD is a mental health disorder that develops after a person is exposed to a traumatic event, like combat or a severe car accident.
Some of the most common symptoms of PTSD are:
- Feeling on edge
- Avoidance of people and places
- Negative changes in mood and thinking
While these symptoms can make it difficult to get a job, PTSD treatment can help lessen the symptoms and improve daily functioning.
The Struggle of Getting a Job with PTSD
Veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan find it difficult to return to everyday life for multiple reasons. They must become reacquainted with family and friends, adjust to sleeping at home again, and find their way through a day considered “normal” by those who have never been abroad. The Department of Veterans Affairs estimates that 11% to 20% of these veterans return home with the wound of traumatic experiences and the symptoms of PTSD.
For many of these veterans, their next battle may be finding an employer that will look past the stigma of PTSD and trust them to be dependable employees. Because most employers do not know much about or do not understand PTSD, they hesitate to hire someone they believe may have this traumatic disorder. Some employers stereotype all veterans as having PTSD.
Employment Facts About Veterans with PTSD
Researchers from the Center for New American Security in Washington, D.C, asked 69 leading companies how they felt about hiring veterans. The employers said that while they thought hiring veterans would reflect well on their companies, most admitted that they were concerned about bringing on those who suffer from the disorder. A separate survey by the nationwide Society for Human Resource Management revealed that nearly one in three employers believe that veterans may be looked over for a job because of the association with PTSD.
Such misconceptions have led to a shockingly high unemployment rate among veterans. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate for veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan aged 24 and under was 29.1%, compared to a national average unemployment rate of 8.2%. The unemployment rate for older veterans of this war was 10.3%, compared with 7.5% for other veterans. The government and some private organizations are trying to reduce the stigma of PTSD and get these deserving veterans a job back at home.
Bridging the Gap Between PTSD and Employment
In a study by researchers from Cornell University’s Industrial and Labor Relations School, 73% of the human resource officers believed that it would be good for their business to hire veterans with disabilities, but 63% said that hiring people with traumatic brain injury or PTSD would be challenging for them.
Researchers say that a significant challenge to getting veterans into the workforce is educating middle managers about PTSD. Through minor office accommodations and a staff educated on mental illness, those with PTSD can become a hardworking part of a team once again.
Getting a Job with PTSD with Treatment
While it may be difficult to get a job with PTSD, there are many benefits of treatment that make it worth seeking help. Some of the most common treatments for PTSD are:
- Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) – CBT is a type of therapy that helps people change their thoughts and behaviors. It has been found to be an effective treatment for PTSD.
- Exposure therapy – Exposure therapy is a type of CBT that helps people face their fears. This can help reduce the symptoms of PTSD.
- Medications – There are many different types of medications that can be used to treat PTSD. Some of the most common are antidepressants, anti-anxiety medications, and beta-blockers.
PTSD treatment can help improve symptoms, which can make it easier to get a job. Treatment can also help people learn new skills and coping mechanisms that can be used in the workplace.