SOURCE: Captain Luis Montalvan

October 23, 2012 06:00 ET

Luis Montalvan: Raising Awareness Regarding PTSD Is Crucial

With at Least One-Third of Returning Iraq War Veterans Reporting Signs of PTSD, There Is an Increasing Need for All Citizens to Understand This Debilitating Condition; Luis Montalvan, a Veteran With PTSD, Believes That Raising Awareness Is the Best Way to Move Forward

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - Oct 23, 2012) - Post-traumatic stress disorder is one condition that used to only attract limited attention from those struggling with a vast array of psychological wounds and their medical providers. However, as more service members return from the Iraq War, the public is realizing just how widespread this psychological condition is. A recent article from The Huffington Post, explains that "as many as one-third of returning Iraq War veterans are [currently] battling PTSD or depression." Although PTSD-sufferers are the only ones that can truly experience the effects of this disorder, it has become increasingly important for the medical community, the government, families and the public to better understand the potential impact of the condition. Luis Montalván, a U.S. Army veteran who is active in PTSD awareness, believes that the first step to understanding the disorder is getting people to realize how present it actually is within American society.

After his tours in Iraq, Captain Luis Montalván struggled with the many symptoms that are associated with PTSD. However, he notes that the PTSD experience is so unique that not everyone faces the same issues, which makes the condition even more difficult to understand. However, The Huffington Post article notes that one common trait of the disorder is that it tends to impact every single facet of the victim's life. In the article, Lisa Cypers Kamen of Harvesting Happiness comments, "PTSD affects all aspects of a veteran's life, often taking family and friends as extended casualties of this silent, invisible war."

The article notes that it is important for everyone to understand the basics of the disorder. Specifically, the public should realize that PTSD is not a fabricated condition, and cannot be corrected through a few counseling sessions. Understanding the exhaustive nature of PTSD, Luis Montalván has helped the public better recognize the condition and how it can be overcome through his book Until Tuesday: A Wounded Warrior and the Golden Retriever Who Saved Him. Montalván remains active in raising PTSD awareness, explaining that it is crucial for soldiers and their families to reach out for help if they are faced with the condition.

Although Luis Montalván has reached many through his community outreach and his book, he believes there is a great deal more to understand about PTSD. He concludes, "If we are to save the lives, families and futures of America's veterans, both the public and private sectors must do more -- much more -- to reach out and provide direct support to those affected by war."

ABOUT:

Luis Montalván was an active member of the United States Army for 17 years. Over the course of his military career, Luis Montalván served in a number of capacities, including as a member of the officer corps, a military policeman, infantryman, and communications specialist. In 2011, Montalván's book, Until Tuesday, was published and continues to win praise and awards from voices and communities across America. Today, Luis Montalván is an advocate for veterans and active duty military personnel who are faced with wounds, both mental and physical, associated with combat and military sexual trauma.