Imagine waking up abruptly at 2.00 a.m. The adrenaline is flowing and you are ready for fight or flight. Consider being in a supermarket and suddenly feeling as if the world is closing in on you. In all likelihood, you are not going back to sleep and the grocery cart gets left in aisle four because you had to leave.
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that's triggered by a terrifying event — either experiencing it or witnessing it. Symptoms may include flashbacks, nightmares and severe anxiety, as well as uncontrollable thoughts about the event. See the Mayo Clinic for more information.
Depending on the source data, the U.S. Government estimates that 10-30% of our veterans have PTSD. Those who saw combat are more likely to be diagnosed and prewar, during war, and postwar variables can increase the likelihood of having PTSD.
Veteran's Administration - Findings from the National Vietnam Veterans' Readjustment Study
Veteran's Administration - Mental Health Effects of Serving in Afghanistan and Iraq
Anyone who has had a pet knows the calming effect of spending time with an animal. Two Bears Ranch will provide an opportunity for veterans with PTSD to benefit from equine and canine therapy, while assisting the animals who are helping them heal.
Veteran's Administration - Reining in PTSD with Equestrian Therapy
Veteran's Administration - Dogs and PTSD
The VA does not have all the answers. We are working on a more comprehensive list of resources for veterans, PTSD and animal therapy. Please contact us if you have information or links to share.