No human being is exempted from stress. Stress causes a number of biological changes and the soldiers are no exception to that.
Soldiers and Stress
Everyone faces challenges in their life in one or the other way. The challenges caries in intensity and should be handled properly both at the physical and emotional level.
Stress at a desirable level is essential. It’s one factor that helps him to strive for achieving his objectives. When stress surpasses the threshold limit, it disturbs both the mental and physical well-being. The stress faced by a civilian and a soldier is entirely different both in nature and intensity. Some of them are listed below:
- Lack of family support is a major contributory factor. The soldier has to face the issues all alone where as civilians get a family support.
- The operational environment including the living conditions, communication, pay etc. plays a significant role and the soldiers has to put up with all the difficulties and it’s a long term commitment. Whereas, a civilian can switch job according to his/her will.
- Serving in isolated and worse environment affects the soldiers.
- Unpredictable factors including unseen threats, denial of leaves during emergencies, inability to meet the aspiration of the family also leads to stress and frustration in soldiers.
- Social Apathy: The search for recognition is what human being strives for. Hearing unfair and ill-informed criticism from countrymen has also an effect on the emotional aspect.
- Poor Leadership: Quality leadership is the need of the hour to motivate soldiers.
- Over functioning is another cause. What can be done is minimize or even eliminate avoidable and extraneous workload.
Few actions that can be taken to compact these issues:
- Addressing the issues or grievances by interaction with the team.
- Routine medical checkups.
- Regular leaves, rotation of troops in sensitive and stressful situations.
- Proper examination of soldiers returning after vacation to check for sign of psychiatric illness.
- Employing the buddy system. Person from same background or state are made as buddies thereby helping them in sharing the problems.are just few points that can be addressed. But the foremost that we as countrymen can do is to respect them, without giving them an unwanted and neglected feeling.