3 New Attempts to Help With PTSD: PAWS, Massage and Medical Marijuana

26 Aug 2016

The PAWS Act, aka, Puppies Assisting Wounded Service members is a Bill being introduced by Nebraska Senator Deb Fischer. Studies have proven that animal combined with therapy may result in:

  • reduction of PTSD systems
  • reducing depression
  • less anxiety
  • reduce feelings of isolation
  • better quality of sleep
  • less of a need for medication

Although the Veterans Administration provides dogs for veterans with physical disabilities it does not provide them for veterans with PTSD. One of the requirements for staying in the system is the veteran would have to see a mental health or primary health care provider quarterly at a VA medical facility.

A new Massage Therapy program is being implemented at the Crouse Hospital, the Syracuse VA Medical Center and Upstate University Hospital. The collaboration is being spear-headed by Clear Path for veterans. Their goal is to get them to relax and the one hour sessions seem to be working. If the veterans relax, they sleep, and solid sleep helps those with depression and post traumatic stress disorder get rid of some of their anxiety.

Studies are being conducted with combat veteran volunteers to smoke up to two joints of marijuana a day to determine if this will help relieve systems of PTSD. To begin with the volunteers will have to have been previously diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder.

There is a two-week assessment and screening in which four different types of marijuana will be introduced. There will also be a placebo substitution introduced at any time during the testing.

Initially, the veterans will be watched for the first four hours after smoking to make sure that nothing adverse happens. At both the beginning and the end of the 12 week testing period there is a physical and extensive physiological assessment, this in addition to regular body monitoring and blood tests.

For more information about PTSD contact us.