If you are reading this article because you or someone you love is considering harming themselves or others, please call the Veterans’ Crisis Hotline at 1-800-273-8255 for immediate assistance.
The U.S. has changed the way it engages in war. Troops are sent between Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan soon after enlisting with little time between deployments. The change comes with a cost: high veteran suicide rates.
Study Shows Rapid and Repeated Deployment Increase Risk of Veteran Suicide
A recent study observed a group of 593 men and women. Everyone in the group met three qualifications: 1) they were in the U.S. Army; 2) they “had been deployed twice;” and 3) they had “attempted suicide between 2004 and 2009.”
The study found that the risk of suicide attempt was heightened for two specific groups. First, the risk was heightened for those who were deployed “within the first 12 months of service.” Second, the risk was heightened for those “with a dwell time . . . of 6 months or less.”
Tim Barclay of the Collateral Damage Project Weighs in on the Issue
As reported by NBC, Tim Barclay of the Collateral Damage Project, a nonprofit offering free state-of-the-art PTSD and TBI treatment, says the results of the study “just make sense.” He believes the risk of suicide increases for those who are quickly deployed because “they haven’t had time to acculturate to military life.” Barclay added that combat “literally changes the brain . . . caus[ing] an overreaction of the sympathetic nervous system that doesn’t shut off.”
In light of the study, Barclay suggests that it might be helpful if soldiers receive training on how to successfully adapt to civilian life.
Veterans Facing Depression May Find that Disability or Unemployability Benefits (TDIU) Can Help Them to Heal
Dealing with depression, anxiety, or suicidal ideations can be extremely overwhelming. At the Law Offices of Attorney Sean Kendall, our main priority is making sure veterans can access all the benefits they are entitled to so that they can stop worrying about money and start focusing on getting well.
General disability benefits are available for any veteran with a service-connected disability, a category which includes mental-health disorders. The amount a veteran receives is determined by the Department of Veterans’ Affairs’ rating system. In essence, the more a disability, such a depression, interferes with a veteran’s life, the more benefits a veteran will be entitled to. For example, if a veteran has a 50% rating, she or he is entitled to $855.41 a month in benefits. That number goes up if the veteran has dependents.
If a veteran’s service-connected disability, such as depression, prevents her or him from maintaining substantially-gainful employment, she or he may be entitled to Total Disability Individual Unemployability (“TDIU”) benefits. TDIU benefits, in a sense, override the rating system and automatically grant a 100% disability rating. Veterans who qualify for TDIU benefits are entitled to $2,973.86 per month.
Apply for Benefits Right Away – If You Are Denied, We Are Here to Help
If you believe you may be eligible for general disability benefits or TDIU, we encourage you to apply right away. If you are denied or receive an unacceptable rating determination, don’t give up – we are here to help. Once you receive your decision, send us a note or give us a call at (877) 629-1712. With decades of experience working with veterans, we are confident we can win you the benefits you are entitled to.