With at least 29 different countries experiencing major conflict in the world today, it is no wonder men and women are returning home with health issues related to PTSD. A Parent with post-traumatic stress disorder, PTSD, will affect the lives of the entire family including the children. Feeling distant, angry and anxious can take a hard toll on the family, and social support if vital to recovery for a person and family members dealing with PTSD.
Among many of the treatment options is a therapy regimen based on dogs. Warrior Canine Connection (WCC) based near Washington DC pairs military veterans with service dogs, puppies that need training. Through training puppies to become service dogs, veterans are able to regain a sense of purpose and establish a friendship with a canine that enables them to reconnect. Organizations like Paws and Stripes, based in New Mexico, train service dogs to help veterans deal with PTSD in their daily lives. Although Paws and Stripes is mostly servicing the New Mexico area, they have set up a resource site to help connect veterans to dogs in their own state.
For more information on what do if you are experiencing PTSD visit HELPGUIDE.ORG and click on the catagory “Mental Health”.
The Royal Dutch Guide Dog Foundation has a program for those suffering from PTSD in the region of the Netherlands. For veterans outside these areas, you can visit the International Guide Dog Federation and see if there is a program available in your area.