• Suicide Now Outranks War-Related Military Deaths

    fightingPTSDsoldiersAccording to a new report recently released by the Pentagon in the Medical Surveillance Monthly Report, suicide is now the leading cause of death among the military.

    War-related causes have dropped to a second ranking for the first time in ten years.  As reported by the Inquisitr, “Suicide accounted for three in 10 military deaths for the period of 2010 to 2012, which the study covered. That outranks not only war but other traditional causes of death including heart disease, homicide, and transportation accidents.”

    According to the Inquisitr article, over the last 10 years, war had been the traditional leading cause of death, from one-third of deaths in 2005 and 2010 to more than 46 percent in 2007, the height of the Iraq War surge.

    Military-related suicides increased dramatically with the onset of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars. Experts believed those figures would abate as the wars ended, but that has not happened. According to an article in the Washington Post 

    “And yet the suicide rate within the military is holding steady. The number of active-duty suicides in 2013 dropped by roughly 19 percent compared with 2012, but 2014 has seen them inch back up. This year, the military had lost 161 active-duty troops to suicide as of July, the most recent data available, compared with 154 during the same six-month time period in 2013. The numbers for the citizen-soldiers of the reserves and the National Guard have been even more dire, climbing 8 percent from 2012 to 2013, from 203 to 220. Gen. Ray Odierno, the Army chief of staff, told me in an interview, ‘I don’t think we’ve hit the top yet on suicides.’”

    The increase in suicides is linked to the increase in number of veterans struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

    If you or someone you know is struggling with PTSD, help is available. If you don’t know where to find help, check out the Resources section of this site and download the free ebook, The Truth about Trauma, available on the homepage of the PTSDPerspectives site.

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