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Mil Med. 2007 Sep;172(9):931-5.

Culture: what is its effect on stress in the military?

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Research Worker, King's Centre for Military Health Research, King's College London, Weston Education Centre, 10 Cutcombe Road, London, SE5 9RJ, UK.


Culture provides the unwritten rules that inform and shape expected behaviors. To date, little research has been conducted into the attitudes or opinions that service personnel hold toward mental health issues. This article examines current literature and research into the recognition of mental health problems in the military and potential organizational barriers to care including stigma and the specific characteristics of a military culture such as the significant reliance on buddy support. We conclude that the barriers to care which operate in both military and civilian populations are not insignificant. Western militaries in fact currently face an uphill struggle to combat the substantial barriers to care that exist.

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