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Statistics Canada says depression, PTSD, anxiety prevalent among military

OTTAWA — Canada’s number crunching agency says about one in six members of the military have reported experiencing symptoms of mental or alcohol disorders.

Statistics Canada surveyed full-time regular members of the Canadian Forces last year.

The results showed nearly 17 per cent of those surveyed had experienced symptoms in the previous 12 months consistent with at least one of a half-dozen disorders.

The Canadian Forces Mental Health Survey asked about major bouts of depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, incidents of anxiety or panic and alcohol abuse, as well as alcohol dependence.

Major depressive episode was the most common disorder reported, with eight per cent of regular force members meeting the criteria.

Just over five per cent of those surveyed reported having suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder while nearly five per cent reported symptoms consistent with generalized anxiety disorder.

The results are somewhat in line with the Canadian Mental Health Association’s findings among the general population.

In a comprehensive mental health study conducted in 2011, the association found that one in five Canadians among the general population will experience a mental health issue at some point in their lifetime.

 
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