There is no robust source of data relating specifically to the needs and inequalities of the Armed Forces community within Wokingham Borough. Instead, national data is relied upon to highlight key issues.
Armed Forces Families
The majority of armed forces families are relatively young women of child bearing age. Spouses often have to cope with being alone by themselves or with the children for quite long periods due to deployment or training. Also, many families live away from family support.
For some groups of conditions, Reservists report higher rates of mental health issues than Regulars. Compared with Regular Armed Forces Families, there can be even greater isolation for Reservist’s Families.
Veterans will be predominantly male. The majority of the ex-service population successfully make the transition to civilian life. Some may have difficulties finding suitable housing, obtaining adaptations to accommodate injuries or other physical health needs, or obtaining financial aid to which they are entitled. Health data for service leavers demonstrates that the overwhelming majority (92%) of them depart in good health.
They are generally fit and with a relatively low prevalence of long-term conditions. They have a broadly similar prevalence of mental health-related conditions to the general population. But some will present with complex health and welfare issues including muscular-skeletal, mental health, alcohol related health complications and substance misuse.
Probable Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) affects about 4% of veterans The overall rate of suicide is no higher than for the general UK population, with the exception of male veterans aged 24 or younger (early leavers from service) who are at increased risk compared to their general population counterparts. For veterans over 65 years old, mobility, independent living and social isolation are main concerns.