Combat stress levels increasing among military personnel

The number of British men and women serving in the armed forces to be diagnosed with combat stress has gone up by a quarter in the last year, according to the latest figures.

In total, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) says over 5,000 military staff have been diagnosed with a mental illness over the past 12 months.

The Army saw the highest rate of patients, with 28.8 per 1,000 of its personnel needing help related to stress. This was followed by the Royal Air Force, with 28.6 per 1,000.

Women were also more likely to be susceptible to the apparent impact of working in a combat zone can have on the brain – with the rate of mental disorders among females at 60.4 per 1,000 compared to 23.7 per 1,000 in males.

Although the figures did show an overall rise, the MoD has also warned the statistics have likely been skewed by a new reporting system.

An MoD spokesperson said: “The mental health of our service personnel and veterans is a top priority – that is why this government has committed £7.4 million to improving services.”

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