The rate of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) may be up to 15 times higher in the military population than it is in the general population, which likely explains in part the prevalence of substance use disorder in the military. Consequently, when people see or hear the term PTSD, they likely think of veterans.
Someone with PTSD can feel helpless and hopeless. Suicidal thoughts are common, as is the abuse of alcohol or other substances in an attempt to stop the intrusive thoughts, memories, and experiences triggered by PTSD.
The Veterans Administration calculated that in 2017, seventeen United States veterans chose to end their life each day that year. Those fatalities are of male and female veterans who served in active duty, an additional average of 2.5 veterans who never served in active duty also chose suicide every day.