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Improving Mental Health For Veteran Labor Reintegration

Veteran unemployment in America is at a historical low, reaching only 2.7% against an average of 4% for the general population. This optimistic outlook is encouraging more and more vets to find a job in the civilian sphere. However, for some, labor reintegration is challenging. While serving in the Armed Forces, you develop extremely valuable skills, but at the same time many bring home the scars of war - both emotional and physical. In order to get ready for the job market, war veterans may need to first take care of themselves. 

PTSD management for labor reintegration

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is the most common service-related mental affection among war veterans, affecting 12-30% of said population. PTSD is a type of anxiety disorder that affects people who have lived through traumatic episodes of threat and powerlessness, for example during a war. Combined interventions of pharmacotherapy and trauma-centered psychotherapy show great results in managing and treating PTSD. You should search for a cognitive-behavioral therapist, since this is the approach that has proven the highest efficacy in treating this disorder.

Although PTSD does not affect an individual's set of skills, its emotional symptoms may challenge or even impair the process of finding and keeping a job. Most positions require the ability to concentrate in a task and follow through instructions for hours at a time. Some of the symptoms of PTSD, like flashbacks and anxious avoidance of triggers, can get in the way and create disruptive distractions. For this reason, in order to reintegrate yourself to the workforce you must consider engaging in therapeutic treatment.

Plastic surgery and reconstruction will make a difference

Disfigurement and scarring is a reality among war veterans, and the social and economic weight of it goes beyond the mere discrimination of employers. Visible traces of wounds, especially on the face and hands, can objectively affect a veteran's mental health. On the contrary, cosmetic treatments will improve a veteran's self-confidence, comfort and motivation. If you have visible traces of wounds, you should consider renewing your physical image first. Several job positions will require interaction with customers, and whether you like it or not your physical appearance will play a big role in your eligibility. 

Face and teeth injuries are very common among veterans, because protective gear rarely covers those parts of your body.  Luckily, most of this damage can be fixed. Scars on the skin, be they from cuts or burns, can be treated by a dermatologist; more severe disfigurement should be approached during an appointment with a plastic surgeon. Missing tooth pieces can be replaced, and there are seamless reconstruction techniques for chipped teeth. 

You are ready to give what you have to offer

War veterans often come home with physical and mental scars and may forget about taking care of their own health. In order to get a civilian job more quickly and easily, veterans must learn how to identify their challenges and scars, and get proper treatment. Once your emotional wounds have been tended to, you are ready to face your next task.

Visit our job board regularly to find companies that have positions available offering veterans jobs, and follow our blog and social media profiles to get news of job fairs in your area.    

By Lucy Wyndham