Post-traumatic stress disorder is a complex mental health condition that occurs after someone has experienced or witnessed a shocking or terrifying event. For example, many who experience the symptoms of PTSD have been in motor vehicle accidents or have been the victims of a violent crime. They often find the condition debilitating.
If you are a veteran of the U.S. military who has experienced the trauma of war, PTSD may be part of your life. It can affect your relationships with your family and friends as well as interfere with your ability to work to earn a living. You may already receive benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, but did you know that you may also qualify for Social Security Disability Insurance?
Your experiences in Iraq, Afghanistan or other war zones may have left you with issues that are confusing, frustrating and difficult to talk about. In fact, your training as a soldier may have left you believing you should not seek help for your problems. Unfortunately, without assistance, you may not get the treatment you need for dealing with PTSD symptoms such as these:
- Terrifying flashbacks you cannot control and which disrupt your normal life
- Recurring nightmares that prevent you from sleeping so you can function during the day
- Depression and feelings of hopelessness
- A persistently negative state of mind
- Uncontrollable reactions, such as shaking, sweating or rage, when you are reminded of the traumatic experience
- Detachment from others because of your need to avoid anything that reminds you of your trauma
The kind of stress you experienced created a physical reaction in your body, and the chemical changes may cause these symptoms to persist for months or years afterward. Fortunately, treatments are available to help you work through the event. As a veteran, you may access such treatment through the VA, including medication, therapy and family counseling.
Don’t hesitate to seek help
Dealing with the paralyzing and life-changing symptoms of PTSD likely means you are struggling to find or keep a job. If this is so, you may wonder whether you can qualify for SSDI. The good news is that you may be eligible for this important benefit even if you already receive VA benefits. The bad news is that if you delay in seeking the help you need, you risk allowing the condition to worsen.
An untreated mental health issue is one of the most common reasons why vets end up struggling with addiction, homelessness and thoughts of suicide. Reach out for the help you need. It is critical that you take advantage of the resources available to you in Florida, including medical professionals, mental health professionals and legal professionals who can assist you in applying for the financial benefits you deserve.