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June 27 is annually recognized as PTSD Awareness Day, a yearly event to help raise awareness about post-traumatic stress disorder. It also serves as a reminder that treatments, resources and help are available for those experiencing it and for caregivers. This is especially true this year as a result of COVID19.
Kenneth Marfilius is a veteran and an assistant teaching professor at Syracuse University’s Falk College. Professor Marfilius specializes in military mental health, veteran social work, suicide prevention, and military culture and social work practice.
Prof. Marfilius is available to discuss and answer questions about post-traumatic stress disorder, especially in the case of veterans and members of the military.
“Post-traumatic stress disorder is a complicated, complex topic — it does not discriminate. We do know that prior trauma is a significant risk factor for the development of PTSD. What we see in the research is this notion of adverse childhood experiences or ACES, which are traumatic experiences that occur during childhood or adolescence, such as physical, sexual or emotional abuse, or violence in the home. There is evidence to support ACES’ does influence one’s health across the entire life span.
“In order to tackle prevention, we must examine the predisposing factors and vulnerabilities. I believe that to really sustain improvement in veteran health – we must first understand the critical need to sustain improvement in the overall public health. These veterans are civilians before entering the military and when they transition out of the military, they are often integrated right back into the communities they came from before service—which makes this a societal issue and community-wide effort.”