The Effects Of Vietnam On Its Veterans

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The Effects Of Vietnam On Its Veterans Essay, Research Paper The Effects of the Vietnam War on its Veterans Thesis: The Vietnam War took many tolls on its soldiers; now the veterans have to deal with medical problems like Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), severe drug and alcohol addictions, and the effects of Agent Orange. I. Introduction II. Post-traumatic Stress Disorder III. Drug and Alcohol Addictions A. Alcohol B. Marijuana C. Heroin IV. Agent Orange A. Background Information B. Diseases of The Effects of the Vietnam War on its Veterans. Have you ever seen a homeless man sleeping in the street and hastily conclude that he is at the bottom of society? I bet that you never stopped to think about where that person has come from. He could have been just like you at one

time, nineteen years old, just out of high school, ready to start his life, but then he was drafted. According to the National Coalition for the Homeless at least one third of homeless males are veterans (Shay 178). A large amount of veterans have severe problems in everyday society. Many veterans have to deal with physical health conditions as well as mental health problems. The Vietnam War took many tolls on its soldiers; now the veterans have to deal with medical like Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), severe drug and alcohol addictions, and the effects of Agent Orange. Perhaps one of the most devastating side effects of fighting a war is the amount of stress that is put on the soldiers. This is because of a mental health problem called Post-traumatic Stress Disorder

(PTSD). PTSD is a condition that is caused by an enormous amount of stress that is put on an individual. Post-Vietnam syndrome is another name for PTSD and the two are even more generally known as war neurosis (Scott 28). War neurosis has been recognized as a medical condition from a time dating back to the civil war (Scott 28). PTSD sets in anywhere from nine to thirty months after the overwhelming traumatic event (Scott 43). The event in which causes this disorder is not always a combat situation, but can also be from something like a rape or an attack. However DeLizza 2 combat is one of the most traumatizing events that can happen to a person. The way this disorder happens is when a person experiences a traumatic event and if they can not handle the situation their senses and

coping mechanisms are overloaded (Danitz 1). One of the affects of PTSD is that the veterans have trouble with relationships because of their numbed emotions (Dantiz 1). This is done so that they will feel protected. Since this is done the horrifying and painful memories do not bother them. People suffering from PTSD also complain of nightmares, insomnia, and always feeling on edge (Danitz 1-2). Some of the other feelings that also go along with PTSD are guilt, rage, alienation, and the general feeling of being a scapegoat (Scott 43). Since everyone in the US was against the war they had bad feelings towards the soldiers. The soldiers were away fighting and when they came home; everybody blamed them for the war. This in turn made them full of guilt and rage. Some felt guilty for

what they had just done and others were extremely mad that the people felt this way. These feelings were also because of the soldiers inability to grieve in the combat zone (Scott 43). Another reason why the Vietnam War was so emotionally rough on its soldiers is because the men were so young. The average age of the US soldier in the Vietnam War was 19 (Danitz 3). In addition when they returned home, they were often alone for plane ride that took about thirty-six hours. Plus when they returned many people rejected them making them feel isolated (Danitz 2-3). For someone at such a young age to go through something like this, is a very hard thing to do. DeLizza 3 This mental health disorder led to another harmful problem for the veterans of the Vietnam War. In 1991, according to