Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Symptoms

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, or PTSD, usually develops after an individual has had a life threatening experience. It is one of the biggest psychiatric health issues affecting veterans that California veteran disability benefits lawyers see. A new study suggests that veterans who suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder are more likely to develop dementia and a host of other health conditions later in life, compared to veterans who do not suffer from PTSD.

Those findings come from research by the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center. The results link P.T.S.D. not only to dementia, but also a number of other conditions. According to the research, veterans who returned from combat zones and have been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder have their risk of heart disease increase by at least 2 to 3 times compared to combat veterans who have no PTSD diagnosis.

Further, veterans who suffer from PTSD have a smaller hippocampus. This is the part of the brain that stores memory.

Additionally, veterans who suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder have a dementia risk that is almost twice that of veterans who do not suffer from P.T.S.D. According to the research, 23 million veterans are also likely to develop other illnesses, including cancer and Alzheimer's disease as they age. This is likely because of the stress that they were exposed to.

Approximately 2 million Americans have served in the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Out of these, at least 400,000 veterans are believed to suffer from or are at risk of developing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. That comprises about 20% of the total number of veterans who have gone to war. Those are staggering numbers, and judging by the delays in psychiatric care for returning veterans, it's not likely that the Department of Veterans Affairs will deal effectively with these problems any time soon.

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