Estimates of the number of traumatic brain injuries sustained by soldiers since the start of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan range as high as 400,000 troops.
All too often the mental symptoms of these brain injuries are misdiagnosed as mental disorders and treated with psychiatric drugs, which are known to induce suicide and violence among long lists of other negative side effects. (See Psychiatry’s All-Out Assault on the U.S. Military: The Unprecedented Rate Of Military Suicides Parallels Troops’ Use of Psychiatric Drugs). But alternative treatments exist for those living with brain injuries.
After serving eight years in the U.S. Army, including deployments to Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, William Rist returned to Colorado with a traumatic brain injury. According to a report by Colorado’s 9News, Rist took prescription medications for years to treat the symptoms caused by his injuries. But the drugs caused additional problems for him and his family. “It actually affected every aspect of my life,” said Rist.
To reclaim his life and his family, Rist set out to find a workable alternative to the drugs and found it in learning to play the guitar. He is now asking the Colorado VA hospital to make music therapy available at the facility. Click here for the entire 9News report.