The Wrong Way and the Right Way to Help Young Veterans with PTSD
This 4th of July, thousands of young American veterans are suffering the debilitating effects of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) after serving their country. Yet some veteran advocates are questioning the effectiveness of the common practices used by the VA mental health system. According to Brian Fleming, a decorated US Army Infantry veteran from the war in Afghanistan, there is a growing avalanche of despair rapidly building up to critical mass among veterans seeking help.
The Veterans Administration reported an average of 22 suicides a day among veterans in 2013. That’s approximately one every 65 minutes — more than were killed in actual combat during the same year. Given that prescription medications used by some VA facilities are consistently failing a large segment of our nation’s heroes, Fleming says it takes more than medication to effectively battle Post-Traumatic Stress.
“After being attacked and severely injured by a suicide bomber who exploded about 3 feet away from me in Kandahar, Afghanistan in 2006, the only solution I was offered were more and more pills,” says Fleming. “But it takes more than pills to get a person beyond a traumatic experience. They may be necessary for a season but for me, and many others I’ve worked with, pills were a temporary solution to problems that required permanent closure.”
Among the veterans Fleming now mentors, some blame their medical care for their conditions going from bad to worse! One such veteran, still in his twenties, was prescribed 23 pills a day to treat symptoms of PTSD. After several months, all of his teeth fell out. But after working with Fleming and some of his associates and partners who are also combat veterans, this soldier completed his Bachelor’s Degree, is now in the process of earning his Master’s Degree, and remains happily married.
“The credit belongs to him alone,” says Fleming. "He made a choice to take control and take back his life. We simply provided him some tools. He’s a true inspiration and success story. I’m humbled and honored to be a part of his life.”
Fleming believes the majority of doctors are sincere and genuinely care about the veterans they treat. But he also believes they need to prescribe solutions that go beyond prescription drugs. This approach was what allowed him to effectively battle and move beyond his own struggle with PTSD and has also proven effective in the lives of other veterans.
Fleming is co-author with Chad Robichaux of the #1 Amazon best-selling book: REDEPLOYED: How Combat Veterans Can Fight the Battle Within and Win the War at Home and Never the Same.
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BIO: Brian Fleming served as a Team Leader in a Scout/Sniper Platoon with the US Army’s 10th Mountain Division in Afghanistan. While deployed, he was blown up twice; first by a roadside bomb, and then by a suicide bomber who exploded 3-feet away from him in Kandahar. Fleming is now known as the “Blown-Up Guy” since his war-time experiences. After enduring 14 months of reconstructive surgery and rehabilitation he took to the stage, sharing and inspiring others with his story while raising awareness for other veterans and their families. Fleming is considered a leading authority on combat-related PTSD and conducts several mentorship programs annually for veterans to help them overcome their own post-war struggles. Fleming lives with his wife and two children in Dallas, Texas.
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For further information or to schedule an interview with Brian Fleming, contact Jina Underwood at 954-882-3165. Fleming is available as a last minute guest for radio and live in-studio TV segments; advance notice is required for other media.Contact Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.BlownUpGuy.com
Available for emergency interview via telephone or satellite uplink from Dallas, Texas.
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