September 12, 2020
3 Mental Health Benefits of Fly Fishing for Veterans with PTSD
One of the most enjoyable stress-relieving hobbies that allow you to freely enjoy the beauty of nature is fly fishing. Did you know that fly fishing offers great mental health benefits? For this reason, countless military veterans who were diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have turned to fly fishing to overcome their mental health condition.
You may already have an idea about how challenging it can be for many of our nation’s heroes to reintegrate themselves into the private sector after their long periods of military service. A large number of our troops have come home for good from their tours of duty overseas with multiple amputations and mental health issues. These prevent them from finding stable and rewarding employment in the private sector. This explains why we see homeless vets living on the streets and trying to keep their sanity. For these veterans, a fulfilling life outside the military is nothing but a pipe dream.
Thankfully, however, more and more veterans are starting to discover the art of fly fishing. According to them, fly fishing creates an immersive and purposeful experience that cultivates a sense of awareness of what is present, improves their focus, and gives them a chance to be one with nature.
How Fly Fishing Helps Veterans Overcome PTSD
Numerous studies show that fly fishing reduces the PTSD-affected person’s chances of experiencing the debilitating symptoms of this mental health disorder. Veteran Car Donations shares the three reasons why fly fishing is good for restoring mental health:
- Mental energy restoration
A veteran who has PTSD often encounters intrusive distressing memories of the traumatic events that they experienced or witnessed during their deployment overseas. In most cases, the affected individual suffers severe emotional distress and painful physical reactions whenever they’re exposed to certain triggers that remind them of those events.
However, medical experts have discovered that significant exposure to the great outdoors provides remarkable benefits to PTSD sufferers. Vets with PTSD who engage in outdoor activities such as fly fishing experience fewer PTSD symptoms and mental exhaustion, studies show. As the affected person empties their mind and focuses on the activity, the melatonin levels in their body begin to balance out. As a result, feelings of depression and fatigue become markedly reduced and the individual’s mental energy is recharged.
- Mind relaxation
Studies have confirmed the connection between nature and mind relaxation. In one study, a group of participants was shown images of trees, mountains, and other natural features to see their effect on stress reduction. The participants reportedly felt more relaxed and mentally renewed. This is one of the reasons why people who enjoy fly fishing treat it as an activity that prevents all sorts of negative thoughts from creeping in since it allows them to practice mindfulness.
To illustrate, a veteran who’s trying to catch fish constantly focuses on balancing the reel against the water’s current while keeping an eye on the line for a possible catch. Throughout the entire process, their mind is steadily focused on what they’re doing. In other words, the possibilities of having their thoughts drifting off to any past distressing event are significantly reduced.
- Workout encouragement and mood enhancement
Individuals who are struggling with PTSD experience mood swings every now and then. Fly fishing combats such episodes as the person’s mind becomes preoccupied with the activity.
Furthermore, fly fishing can also be a good exercise for those who want to burn up to 1,500 calories. In case you’re not aware, exercising triggers the release of endorphins that are responsible for enhancing an individual’s mood.
Help Veterans Overcome PTSD By Donating a Vehicle Today!
PTSD is a common occurrence among veterans who served in war-torn places overseas. They try to forget their traumatic past experiences by resorting to drugs and alcohol. But these only worsen their problems.
To effectively address their mental health issue, they need to have access to mental health care. That is why we at Veteran Car Donations have teamed up with IRS-certified 501(c)3 nonprofit organizations to provide veterans with whatever they need to restore their mental health.
You can help us in our mission by donating to us any type of vehicle you no longer need or use. We’ll have your vehicle auctioned off, with the proceeds going straight to our nonprofit partners. These charities will use the funding to sustain and expand their programs that provide veterans in your community access to psychological health services, free medical treatment, employment opportunities, family support, financial assistance, and many other life-changing benefits.
In return for your support, you’ll be entitled to a top tax deduction, which you can claim in the next tax season. You’ll also benefit from our free towing service. We can provide you with this service wherever you’re located in the United States since our vehicle donation programs cover the entire country.
It’s Time to Give Back to Our Heroes!
You can give back to our nation’s heroes by donating a vehicle to Veteran Car Donations today. Call us at 877-594-5822 or fill out our online donation form to give our struggling veterans a good chance to live happy, decent, and productive lives!