Mental Health

Defending the Republic has a variety of mental health resources, information, support options organizations, and more. Explore the pages below to learn more:


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Defending the Republic topics to explore, identify, recognize and get the support you need.


Depressive disorder can affect anyone. It may be marked by feelings of intense sadness or hopelessness, and some find that they lose interest or pleasure in activities that they used to enjoy. People with depression can experience feelings of guilt, unworthiness, or low self-esteem, and they may start avoiding being around people.

Depression is a common but serious disorder — one that typically requires some treatment to manage. Depression is treatable.

The symptoms of depression may be hard to notice at first, so it’s important to be aware of your thoughts, moods, and behaviors and note if they start to change.


Effects of TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury)
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). The brain affects how you think; how you feel; how you act. TBI can affect your physical functions, thinking abilities, behaviors, and more. The injury can range from mild to severe, and it may increase your risk for mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression, as well as sleeping problems.

A traumatic brain injury can result from:

  • A blow to your head by an object, such as a fist during a fight
  • Your head striking an object, such as the inside of a vehicle during a crash
  • The impact to your head of a nearby blast or explosion


Common symptoms may include:

  • Headaches
  • Blurred vision
  • Hearing problems
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Dizziness
  • Changes in your sense of taste or smell
  • Difficulty concentrating or remembering things
  • Repeating yourself
  • Becoming easily angry or frustrated

No matter what you are experiencing, treatments and resources are available. Please look at all available treatment option from organizations that offer treatment options.


Get yourself a screening and find the best option for you.


PTSD(Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)

After experiencing a traumatic event — accident, an IED blast, or the death of a fellow Service member — the moment or event can cause psychological and physical trauma that can continue for weeks, months, and even years later.


Common issues experienced, can be avoiding places or things that remind you of the experience, nightmares, sleeplessness, or anxiety, finding hard to concentrate, startle easily, and lose interest in things they used to care about.


There are resources to help you recover. Even if your symptoms come and go — or surfaced months or years after the traumatic event — effective treatments are available.


No matter what you are experiencing, treatments and resources are available.


Evidence-based therapies are among the most effective treatments for PTSD;

  • Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) helps Veterans to identify how traumatic experiences have affected their thinking, to evaluate those thoughts, and to change them.
  • Prolonged Exposure (PE) helps Veterans to gradually approach and address traumatic memories, feelings, and situations.
  • Cognitive Behavioral Conjoint Therapy (CBCT) helps couples understand the effect of PTSD on relationships and can improve interpersonal communications.


Experiencing symptoms like having a tough time thinking clearly, or making sense when you speak, seeing or hearing things that might not actually be there, it is important to consult your doctor. Schizophrenia may hinder your ability to make good decisions and affect your personal relationships, so it is important to share your experiences with a medical professional who can help.


Many people with schizophrenia can recover and live full lives when their condition is correctly diagnosed and treated. They are able to finish school, hold steady jobs, enjoy relationships, and live independently.


But it’s important to seek help as soon as possible.


Symptoms of Schizophrenia

People with schizophrenia experience different symptoms, but here are some common signs to recognize:

  • Hallucinations
  • Delusions, such as feeling like you are being watched or followed when you are not\
  • Confused thinking
  • Changes in feelings and behaviors
  • Difficulty feeling and expressing positive emotions
  • Reduced range of emotional expression, such as limited facial expressions or eye contact
  • Difficulty getting out of the house, doing things with other people, or pursuing goals such as going to work, attending school, or maintaining relationships
  • Trouble concentrating or paying attention, memory loss, or slow thinking.

It’s important to discuss these signs with a doctor, as symptoms for schizophrenia can be similar to those of other mental health conditions.


Evidence-based therapies are among the most effective treatments for schizophrenia;

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) helps Veterans diagnosed with schizophrenia and psychosis to understand the relationships among their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors and to create new patterns of thinking to support positive feelings.
  • Social Skills Training (SST) teaches Veterans ways to respond to others and better communicate their thoughts, feelings, and needs. This therapy can help you improve your personal relationships and functioning in society, make progress toward your recovery goals, and feel more independent again.
  • Behavioral Family Therapy (BFT) helps Veterans diagnosed with schizophrenia and their families, learn about new communication and problem-solving skills, and also focuses on family education.

No matter what you are experiencing, treatments and resources are available.
But it’s important to seek help as soon as possible.

Substance Use
Alcohol and other drugs are often used in response to stress, anxiety, depression, and other mental health challenges. Despite the temporary relief a substance may seem to provide, increased substance use can lead to long-term consequences.

(SUD) Substance Use Disorder

Often referred to as “addiction,” substance use disorder (SUD) is a disease that causes people to have difficulty controlling their use of alcohol, drugs, and other substances, including opioids. Untreated, this misuse can begin to influence many aspects of life.


Signs and Symptoms of (SUD)

  • Increased urge to drink or to use drugs.
  • Inability to stop drinking or using drugs, despite negative consequences.
  • Change in relationships due to drinking or drug use.
  • Feeling depressed or anxious about your substance use.
  • Feeling sick and experiencing withdrawal symptoms when drinking or drug use stops.
  • Increased tolerance, which refers to the need over time for more alcohol or stronger drugs to achieve the desired effect.

Fortunately, there are many ways to recover from alcohol or drug use disorders. Take the next step look for help.

Suicide Prevention
Top clinical priority is preventing suicide among all Veterans. You can explore suicide prevention resources to build networks of support among community-based organizations, Veterans Service Organizations, health care providers, and other members of your community that strengthen protective factors for Veterans.