Depression in Female Veterans Returning from Deployment: The Role of Social Factors

TitleDepression in Female Veterans Returning from Deployment: The Role of Social Factors
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsSairsingh, Holly, Phyllis Solomon, Amy Helstrom, and Dan Treglia
JournalMilitary Medicine
Date Published03/2018

Women are serving in the armed forces and deployed to areas of conflict in increasing numbers. Problems such as depressive symptoms and risks related to combat exposure can have negative effects on adjustment following service; understanding the relationship between these problems may contribute to strategies providers can use to facilitate healthy adjustment after deployment. The purpose of this study is to examine social factors as they relate to mental health adjustment, namely depressive symptoms among female veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan as part of Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom, and Operation New Dawn (OND). This study highlights the role of social factors, specifically social support and perceived financial status, as potential barriers to healthy emotional readjustment following deployment. The findings suggest that it may be beneficial for mental health providers to screen female veterans and refer them to appropriate services to reduce financial stressors and strengthen their use of social support.

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