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For the first time in the history of this great country, we are fighting a war in which we are deploying our service members repeatedly. One in five returning soldiers are believed to be dealing with some type of combat stress. At Cedar Springs, we have also identified a different kind of trauma, referred to as Complex Post Traumatic Stress (PTS).

Complex PTS occurs when an individual suffers significant and repeated trauma. The resulting behaviors are not limited to the typical intrusive thoughts or nightmares associated with traditional PTS but rather include an additional anti-social cluster of behavioral choices that repeatedly alienate the individual from society and place him or her at significant risk. This often includes significant substance abuse, aggression, and violence.

The Warriors of this conflict include a generation accustomed to immediate gratification, rapid resolution of challenges, and numerous chances to “do-over.” Additionally, a greater number of citizen-soldiers, guardsmen, and reservists are among the ranks. Prolonged and repeated combat experience and time away from families place a tremendous stress on these Warriors.

The Recovery Zone, a TRICARE®-certified, residential treatment program at Cedar Springs Hospital, specializes in the psychiatric care of active-duty military personnel and veterans. We strive to provide effective whole person treatment in order to return service members to duty with honor and to their families with dignity. In the past, providing psychiatric care often denoted a purely biological approach to the individual. At the Recovery Zone, Warriors receive a comprehensive assessment and treatment experience which is tailored to their individual needs and learning styles and which addresses more than just biological symptoms.

The Recovery Zone offers several intervention options for Complex PTS. After clinical assessment, Cedar Springs is able to offer therapeutic intervention grounded in the concepts of Prolonged Exposure Theory, Cognitive Processing Theory, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, Massage Therapy, Equine Assisted Psychotherapy, Cognitive Processing Therapy, Eye Movement Desensitization, Reprocessing, and Virtual Reality. Within the Recovery Zone program, emphasis is placed on resilience and reintegration.