Untreated Mental Illness May Lead To Depression & Addiction

Approximately 7.7 million Americans aged 18 or older suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. When a mental illness is left untreated, it may result in depression and substance abuse for some individuals. Rehabilitation facilities can help people with PTSD manage their illness and detoxify, but more experts are working to raise awareness for the condition.

Navy captain Paul Hammer is the director for the Naval Center for Combat and Operational Stress Control at the San Diego Medical Center. He has been lecturing experts and patients alike on PTSD to help the Navy continue its efforts to better understand and treat the condition, according to the North County Times.

“Part of the problem I see is that there are a lot of people who think they understand PTSD, but they don’t,” Hammer told the news source. “Everything they’ve learned comes from ‘Rambo,’ and it’s greatly different.”

More than 400,000 veterans receive treatment for mental or psychological conditions, such as PTSD, according to the Department of Veterans Affairs. Rehabilitation facilities can help individuals manage their disorder, and educate their loved ones on how they can support the person with the illness.