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Army October 11, 2012
IT IS estimated that one in five ADF
members will have experienced a
mental health disorder in the past 12
months. In recognising the impor-
tance of this, the ADF will hold its
inaugural ADF Mental Health Day on
Coinciding with World Mental Health
Day, it aims to promote open discus-
sion of mental health issues and educate
members to better recognise and under-
stand the symptoms.
The Director General of Mental
Health Psychology and Rehabilitation,
David Morton, said the ADF wanted
to highlight to its members that mental
health was an important issue and one
"It's an excellent opportunity for the
ADF to promote mental fitness, health
and wellbeing," he said.
"We're trying to reduce the stigma
and barriers that reside around mental
Research conducted in 2010 by the
ADF indicated 54.1 per cent of ADF
members would experience mental health
issues at some stage in their lifetime.
The research also found no significant
relationship between operational service
and post-traumatic stress disorder cases.
Mr Morton said there was good evi-
dence that mental health conditions
could often be treated successfully, even
more so if people acted early.
"To minimise the impact on careers,
families, social lives and general wellbe-
ing, ADF members must improve their
In support of World Mental Health Day,
Cpl Nick Wiseman talks to the Director
General Mental Health Psychology and
Rehabilitation about how the ADF supports
members with mental health issues.
awareness of mental health issues," he
"They must understand ways to main-
tain good mental health, be willing to
seek advice and actively support those
who are seeking help."
Regional areas are scheduled to con-
duct activities to tie in with ADF Mental
Health Day and the new ADF Mental
Health Plan will be released on the day.
Mr Morton said mental health issues
could affect anyone.
"It is important that we are aware of
the signs so that we are able to recognise
them in ourselves and in our mates, and
to know what action to take," he said.
"The earlier you do something about
it the better your chances of recovering."
For more information on mental health visit
Be aware of threats.
Build in protections.
Watch out for signs of trouble.
Consider the impact on your family.
Get help when you need it.
Remember -- no one does it alone.
Feeling blue: More
than 50 per cent of ADF
members will experience
mental health issues in
Photo by LAC Bill Solomou
We're trying to
reduce the stigma
and barriers that
-- Director General Mental
Health Psychology and
Rehabilitation David Morton
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