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Can PTSD Service Dogs Improve Mental Health In Military Veterans?

    PTSD Service Dogs Improve Mental Health

    Mental Health News

    Researchers at Purdue University, Indiana, the US, explored how PTSD service dogs are helpful in managing combat veteran PTSD. The study is published in the journal PLOS ONE.

    The Study

    The research team studied 82 military veterans with PTSD and their PTSD service dogs. They surveyed the personal characteristics of the service dogs and the veterans, veteran-dog interactions, the closeness in the veteran-dog relationship, and the severity of PTSD symptoms.

    The Findings

    The results revealed the potential mechanisms underlying the alleviation of mental health symptoms by service dogs in people with PTSD. Closer bonds between military veterans and their service dogs reduce PTSD symptoms most effectively.

    Moreover, better mental health with reduced PTSD symptoms was associated with a number of factors, including the perception of the dog’s care as being easy.

    One of the lead researchers, Clare Jensen, elaborated: “This study provides new information about how and why service dogs help people with PTSD [and can be instrumental in devising new treatment options for post-traumatic stress disorder].

    To Know More You May Refer To

    Jensen, C. L., Rodriguez, K. E., MacLean, E. L., Abdul Wahab, A. H., Sabbaghi, A., & O’Haire, M. E. (2022). Characterizing veteran and PTSD service dog teams: Exploring potential mechanisms of symptom change and canine predictors of efficacy. PloS one17(7), e0269186. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0269186