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Showing library results for: Reedfitzke

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1 The buffering effect of relationships on combat exposure, military performance, and mental health of U.S. military soldiers: A vantage point for CFTs

The buffering effect of relationships on combat exposure, military performance, and mental health of U.S. military soldiers: A vantage point for CFTs

APA Citation:

Reed‐Fitzke, K., & Lucier‐Greer, M. (2020). The buffering effect of relationships on combat exposure, military performance, and mental health of U.S. Military soldiers: A vantage point for CFTs. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, 46(2), 321-336. https://doi.org/10.1111/jmft.12402

Focus:

Deployment
Mental health
Other

Branch of Service:

Army

Military Affiliation:

Active Duty
Guard
Reserve

Population:

Adulthood (18 yrs & older)
Young adulthood (18 - 29 yrs)


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Research & Summary

Authors: Reed‐Fitzke, Kayla; Lucier‐Greer, Mallory

Year: 2020

Abstract

This study examined the role of cumulative combat experiences with regard to military performance and conduct and mental health among a sample of young soldiers from the Army STARRS dataset (N = 5,283). Higher levels of cumulative combat experiences were directly related to poorer performance and conduct and a greater likelihood of anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Military performance and conduct served as a linking mechanism between combat experiences and mental health. Using moderated mediation structural equation modeling, relationship disruptions were found to exacerbate the adverse effects of combat experiences; conversely, unit cohesion buffered the impact of combat experiences. Implications for military helping professionals include identifying leverage points for intervention, particularly strengthening the social connections of service members within and outside the military.

2 A person-centered approach to identifying at-risk U.S. Army soldiers-in-training based on adverse childhood experiences

A person-centered approach to identifying at-risk U.S. Army soldiers-in-training based on adverse childhood experiences

APA Citation:

Reed-Fitzke, K., Duncan, J. M., Wojciak, A. S., Ferraro, A J., Sánchez, J., & Smith, K. M. (2022). A person-centered approach to identifying at-risk U.S. Army soldiers-in-training based on adverse childhood experiences. Traumatology. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1037/trm0000395

Focus:

Child maltreatment
Mental health
Trauma

Branch of Service:

Army

Military Affiliation:

Active Duty

Population:

Adulthood (18 yrs & older)
Young adulthood (18 - 29 yrs)


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Research & Summary

Authors: Reed-Fitzke, Kayla; Duncan, James M.; Wojciak, Armeda S.; Ferraro, Anthony J.; Sánchez, Jennifer; Smith, Kevin M.

Year: 2022

Abstract

Military service members are confronted with numerous stressors as they progress through their career. Given the military’s desire to maintain mission readiness, it is imperative to identify areas of early intervention to promote optimal functioning and health. This study used the stress process framework and a person-centered approach to identify subgroups of soldiers-in-training based on adverse childhood experiences (ACEs). Specifically, two questions were addressed: (a) Are there distinct profiles of ACEs among soldiers-in-training, and (b) who are the most at-risk soldiers-in-training? The sample consisted of 30,836 soldiers-in-training from the Army study to Assess Risk and Resilience in Servicemembers. Five subgroups were identified using latent profile analysis: low adversity, moderate emotional adversity, elevated emotional adversity, moderate structural adversity, and high cumulative adversity. Results from a multivariate and univariate analyses of variance indicated significant small main effects of profile membership in anxiety, depression, posttraumatic stress disorder, and resilient mindset. Those with high cumulative adversity and elevated emotional adversity appeared to be the most at-risk regarding mental health, yet those with high cumulative adversity had similar levels of resilient mindset as the lower adversity groups. Those with elevated emotional adversity had the lowest levels of resilient mindset. Findings provide a more holistic understanding of unique combinations of ACEs among individuals’ as they enter military service. ACEs profiles may help providers identify those who may benefit from targeted supports (e.g., trauma-informed mental health providers) prior to or during service for those who may be most vulnerable to poor outcomes.

3 Identifying risk and resilience factors associated with the likelihood of seeking mental health care among U.S. Army Soldiers-in-training

Identifying risk and resilience factors associated with the likelihood of seeking mental health care among U.S. Army Soldiers-in-training

APA Citation:

Duncan, J. M., Reed-Fitzke, K., Ferraro, A. J., Wojciak, A. S., Smith, K. M., & Sánchez, J. (2020). Identifying risk and resilience factors associated with the likelihood of seeking mental health care among US Army soldiers-in-training. Military Medicine, 185(7-8), e1247-e1254. https://doi.org/10.1093/milmed/usz483.

Focus:

Mental health
Trauma

Branch of Service:

Army

Military Affiliation:

Active Duty
Guard
Reserve

Population:

Adulthood (18 yrs & older)
Young adulthood (18 - 29 yrs)


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Research & Summary

Authors: Duncan, James M.; Reed-Fitzke, Kayla; Ferraro, Anthony J.; Wojciak, Armeda S.; Smith, Kevin M.; Sánchez, Jennifer

Year: 2020

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: The Department of Defense aims to maintain mission readiness of its service members. Therefore, it is important to understand factors associated with treatment seeking in order to identify areas of prevention and intervention early in a soldier's career that can promote positive functioning and increase their likelihood of seeking mental health care when necessary. METHOD: Using a theory of planned behavior lens, this study identified potential barriers (risk) and facilitators (resilience) to treatment seeking among 24,717 soldiers-in-training who participated in the New Soldiers Study component of the "Army Study to Assess Risk and Resilience in Servicemembers" (Army STARRS). Approval for this study was granted by the University of Iowa IRB # 201706739. Hierarchal linear regression modeling and independent samples t-tests were used to examine associations between demographics and study variables, intersections of risk and resilience, and to explore differences in the likelihood of seeking help based on mental health diagnoses. RESULTS: A four-stage hierarchical linear regression was conducted, using likelihood of help-seeking as the dependent variable, to identify the most salient factors related to help-seeking. "Step one" of the analysis revealed soldiers-in-training who identified as female, Hispanic or Other ethnicity, and married, divorced, or separated reported a greater likelihood of seeking help. "Step two" of the analysis indicated soldiers-in-training with a history of sexual trauma, experience of impaired parenting, and clinical levels of mental health symptomatology (anxiety, depression, PTSD) reported a greater likelihood of seeking help. Inversely, soldiers-in-training with a history of emotional trauma and parental absence/separation reported a lower likelihood of seeking help. "Step three" of the analysis demonstrated soldiers-in-training with a prior history of seeking help and larger social networks had a greater likelihood of seeking help. "Step four" of the analysis revealed several interactive effects between risk and resilience factors. Specifically, soldiers-in-training who reported greater depressive symptomatology in combination with prior history of treatment seeking reported a greater likelihood of help seeking, whereas soldiers-in-training who reported prior sexual trauma and PTSD in combination with large social networks reported a lower likelihood of seeking help. Finally, a greater percentage of soldiers-in-training with clinical levels of anxiety, depression, and PTSD indicated they would likely seek help in comparison to soldiers-in-training without clinical symptoms. CONCLUSION: Findings suggest few soldiers-in-training are likely to seek help when experiencing a problem. General efforts to encourage help-seeking when needed are warranted with particular focus on subsets of soldiers-in-training (eg, men, those with a history of some adverse childhood experiences). Strengths of this study include the examination of a large sample of soldiers-in-training to identify possible leverage points for early intervention or prevention prior to entering stressful military operating environments. Limitations of this study include the examination of only one military branch and exclusion of soldiers not "in-training." Future studies could consider replicating the current study using a sample of military personnel longitudinally to track behavioral trends as well as looking at military populations outside of basic combat training.

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