The Merriam - Webster's Collegiate Dictionary defines war as a state of open and declared armed hostile conflict between states or nations. If you ask anybody that has served in any type of warfare, you'll get a variety of answers, albeit none as sweet and simple as the one given in a dictionary. Even those that have never come close to the front line, such as the women and children back at home, have their own tales to tell. War has a profound effect on everyone, regardless of race, gender, or age.
When hearing the statistics of a war, you learn how many are dead, injured, captured, and starving. The physical ramifications as a result of being in combat can range from a nick and a few scratches, losing a limb, or even losing a life. Time tends to heal these injuries. The psychological effects of war on the other hand are trickier to deal with. Most veterans that return home after fighting in war have no major readjustment problems. It is not so easy for a small percentage of soldiers that suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder to readjust. In fact the symptoms can remain for years after the experience of being in combat. There are some characteristics of this disorder: feelings of helplessness, nightmares and or flashbacks, a separation or isolation from other people, lack of interest in activities that were at one time a favorite thing to do, anxiety, depression, difficulty concentrating, phobic reactions, feelings of guilt, forgetfulness, headaches, and bouts of anger. An event that is outside the range of the human experience, re-experiencing the event, avoidance of certain things, and heightening of energy are in a nutshell, with other factors, how this disorder is recognized.
Often the veterans put off getting help due to guilt of having survived or not being able to trust the doctors. Then they try self-treatment, which usually means the use of a foreign substance of some kind. The most used and seemingly preferred method is alcohol. Other...
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