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Abstract

The purpose of the present research was to identify rates of posttraumatic stress and depressive symptoms in soldiers returning from war. During reintegration training, U.S. Army soldiers, who recently returned from a 12-month deployment to either Iraq (Operation Iraqi Freedom, n = 2,275) or Afghanistan (Operation Enduring Freedom, n = 1,814), completed study materials. Surveys assessed self-reported levels of depression, posttraumatic stress, and life satisfaction. Results indicated that approximately 44% of soldiers who volunteered to participate self-reported clinically significant levels of depressive symptoms, posttraumatic stress symptoms, or both. Although assessing symptoms and not disorders, these results suggest a potentially high rate of mental health concerns in soldiers immediately after returning from a combat zone. Further research should examine the utility of broad scale interventions.