articles about mental health

31/03/2015 RT

Experts warn the “floodgates” of post-traumatic stress are about to open, as a top armed forces charity claims mental health issues among military personnel have risen 26 percent over the last year.

mental health, risks, veterans
13/05/2014 The Guardian

More than 1,600 service personnel required medical treatment in the past year

mental health, risks
13/05/2014 Telegraph

Not all Afghan veterans will suffer from mental trauma – but we owe a debt to those who do

mental health, risks
21/01/2014 British Forces News

The Defence Committee hears evidence about mental health risks in the armed forces.

War Trauma Hits Young Soldiers Hardest: New Report

Post-war mental health problems are most common in young soldiers from disadvantaged backgrounds; also in veterans who left the forces in the last decade.

The report, The Last Ambush?, draws on over 150 sources, including 41 British military mental health studies, as well as testimony from veterans. 

The report calls for the policy of recruiting from age 16 to be reviewed so that the greatest burden of risk is not left to the youngest, most vulnerable recruits to shoulder. 

The report includes testimony from veterans and discusses in depth:

  • how and why some veterans experience mental health problems
  • the limitations of mental health research in military groups
  • the role of adolescent maturity and childhood adversity
  • the role of military culture, structures and operations
  • the role of social and structural support after leaving the armed forces
  • why raising the minimum age of recruitment to 18 would better serve the interests of young people in respect of mental health risks


Download the full report (PDF 1294kb)

Download the Executive Summary (PDF 268kb)

Read the press release: War trauma hits young soldiers hardest: new report

Read the ForcesWatch response to the Ministry of Defence's statement about The Last Ambush, 28 October 2013

Read the

mental health, recruitment
28/10/2013 ForcesWatch press release

Young soldiers recruited from disadvantaged backgrounds are substantially more likely than other troops to return from war experiencing problems with their mental health, says a wide-ranging report published today by human rights group ForcesWatch.

28/10/2013 The Guardian

Former soldiers criticise MoD recruitment practices, with Britain one of only 19 countries to allow 16-year-olds to join up

28/10/2013 BBC Newsbeat article and video

Soldiers who join the Army as teenagers are more likely to suffer from mental health problems after being deployed, a new report suggests.

28/10/2013 Wales Online

Forces Watch report calls for the minimum age of recruitment to be raised to 18 to avoid exposing the youngest soldiers to the most trauma