Serving in Iraq, Afghanistan Not Behind Rising Suicide Rates in Military: Study

 – April 1, 2015  –– 

In a study of almost 4 million American military personnel, serving in Iraq or Afghanistan was not associated with suicide risk, a new study finds. The researchers did find an association between suicide risk and separation from military service, especially for those who served less than four years. However, the study did not prove a cause-and-effect link. One expert noted that re-entering civilian life is a vulnerable time. "Leaving the military is a critical period," said Rachel Yehuda, PhD, director of the traumatic stress studies division at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City. "Even though people think they are home safe, they are not completely home safe. The next few years are going to be a critical time," she said.

- Rachel Yehuda, PhD, Professor, Psychiatry, Neuroscience, Director, the Traumatic Stress Studies Division, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Director, Mental Health Patient Care Center and PTSD Research Program, the James J. Peters Veterans Affairs Medical Center in the Bronx

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