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Voice of the Commonwealth - The Global Influencer

Voice of the Commonwealth - The Global Influencer

Further studies needed to support families of UK Veterans

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Europe UK CU – A new study focusing on the psychological wellbeing of family members of veterans as it pointed to the restrictions of data in the UK and the need for further research into this area.

The ‘UK Veterans Family Study’ is being led by Professor Cherie Armour of the School of Psychology at Queen’s University Belfast and Professor Nicola Fear of King’s Centre for Military Health Research at King’s College London.

The initial findings focused on the current data for psychological health and wellbeing of families of veterans from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States.

The study is sponsored by the Forces in Mind Trust that evaluates the impact of military service on children, partners and couples.

Results of the study indicated a link between veteran post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and psychological factors in partners of UK veterans, and their family in Australia, Canada, and the US. The effects of PTSD have only been recognized within the last 50 years and can often range from minor conditions that resolve on their own to more severe long-lasting effects.

The study also indicated Partners of veterans having PTSD in the UK could have a greater possibility of clinical levels of depression, anxiety, PTSD, and alcohol misuse as opposed to UK Partners of non-veterans.

The other results indicated veterans’ families used a variety of methods to cope with their PTSD distress and also pointed out the lack of studies in the UK on adult children of veterans but research from US, Canada, and Australia demonstrated the possibility of anxiety, depression, PTSD, and alcohol/substance misuse.

Professor Cherie Armour said “In this study, we have found that there are significant barriers to support for both veterans and their families in the UK and this presents unique difficulties for these individuals and family units who are experiencing a range of challenges and stress.

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