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Combat Stress is the UK's leading Veterans' mental health charity

People react to trauma
in different ways

Mental ill-health affects ex-Service men and women of all ages.
Traumatic experiences manifest with the individual in many different ways and sometimes do not surface until much later in their lives.
Feelings which were buried deep inside may come out randomly, or else triggered by another seemingly unrelated life event, and once out can be very hard to contain.

Service personnel are at particular risk of post traumatic stress syndrome (PTSS/ PTSD) for two reasons – firstly they are much more likely to have seen or lived through a horrible life experience, and secondly because as part of their training members of the armed forces are taught to bury their feelings, as in a war situation there is no time to dwell in the heat of battle.

A life without fear

Returning from war can be just as difficult mentally as physically, often affecting family and friends as they struggle to rebuild their lives.
Common symptoms to look out for are:

• Work-related or relationship problems
• Feeling numb and empty
• Feeling suicidal
• Self harm and self-destructive tendencies
• Being easily moved to tears
• Avoidance of people and places
• Panic attacks/anxiety/depression/mood swings
• Feeling isolated
• Frequent periods of withdrawal into oneself
• Nightmares/flashbacks/insomnia
• Anger or aggressive behaviour
• Feeling distrustful and suspicious/blaming others
• Misuse of alcohol/drugs/gambling and/or food
• Seeking out high-risk/dangerous pursuits


How Combat Stress can and does help

Combat Stress support services are always free of charge, and are proven to work.

Vision – Veterans able to live free from the harmful effects of psychological wounds.

Mission – to provide timely, effective clinical treatment and welfare support to Veterans who suffer from psychological wounds.

Values – Always put Veterans at the centre of our work; Aspire to excellence in everything we do; Foster a culture of respect and integrity

Combat Stress currently spends nearly £15 million per annum delivering its unique range of specialist treatment and welfare support. Please show you care and donate now to help us continue to help them.

If you need to contact Combat Stress, please call the free 24-hour Helpline for Veterans, Service personnel, and their families:
0800 138 1619.

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