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Getting effective treatment after the development of PTSD symptoms is paramount in improving day to day function and decreasing symptoms.  Please seek care by a medical treatment professional if your symptoms increase, change or something new arises

In a recent blog post by Rover.com. it is estimated  that 8% of our population suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder during their lifetime;  (approximately 8 million Americans suffer annually.) Veterans tell a different story.  Often a silent, painfilled, neglected story.  Vietnam Vets :27=30% ; Persian Gulf War Veterans 16%; Iraq and Afghanistan 17%; and data continues to be gathered. Not to slight any other Theaters, these numbers were most supported.

So, along with medical intervention, mind, body, whole health care, how do our four legged battle buddies fit in?

Let’s begin with companionship.  Referring to the chart of potential PTSD symptoms below, see how many items you identify that would be helped by the company of a dog.  Working a step further, some theories suggests that we feel a greater attraction to species that have cute or baby-like features with a large head and obvious eyes.

Next, both the human and dog brain will release feel good hormones in response to petting, cuddling and pressure applications. This is a mutually beneficial relationship between dog and human.  Find examples below or think of some of your own experiences that may correlate here.

“Most of the properties that a relationship should have in order to be characterize as friendship are traceable in the human-pet association: intimacy, companionship, trust, loyalty, commitment, affection, acceptance, sympathy, concern for other’s welfare, as well as time spent together and maintenance of the pair bond after long separations.

For me, if Cam isn’t there I feel off balance,  We’re teammates, there’s safety in numbers and he’s my medical proxy so to speak, in the absence of my husband.

PTSD SYMPTOMS       

anger, anxiety, apathy, avoidance, communication problems, delusions, depression, distressing dreams, fear, flashbacks, guilt,  hopelessness, hallucinations,  insomnia, irritability, isolation, lack of feeling, mistrust, night terrors, on edge, physical pain, poor concentration, poor self esteem, rage,  short term memory, trouble remembering, ulcers, vivid dreams, worry.

This article is from our dear friend Melinda and her service dog Cam🐕‍🦺🐕‍🦺💙

PTSD and Service Dogs
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