A study published in the Journal of Disability and Rehabilitation has confirmed that scuba diving does have therapeutic benefits for military veterans with physical and psychological injuries as a result of combat.

The study was led by Alice Morgan and featured 15 veterans from Deptherapy UK.

The main study was conducted in 2016 but the results have only just been published. The research included quantitative studies of mental well-being and functional ability, as well as interviews with participants, families and health professionals.

The study showed that participants reported improved levels of depression, anxiety, and social function. The study also found that improvements where greater in those with psychological rather than physical injuries.

The study’s conclusions include that scuba diving can provide great therapeutic benefits for military amputees, and those suffering from PTSD, and can offer them improved social function and alleviate depression.

Psychologist and Deptherapy Vice President Richard Castle, who undertook a supervisory role during the study, said:

“This has been a crucially important piece of research [by the University of Sheffield Medical School] and demonstrates the positive impact that the Deptherapy model can have for ex-Service personnel who have experienced life-changing physical and mental injuries. Crucially, the study also identifies areas where Deptherapy can improve the level of support we offer, and the study recommendations have already been taken forward by the Deptherapy Board. We now need additional resources to monitor the impact going forward, and commission further independent longitudinal research and to widen the evidence base to assess the results of the developments we have initiated.”

Check out the study here.

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Sam Helmy is a TDI/SDI Instructor Trainer, and PADI Staff and Trimix Instructor. Diving for 28 years, a dive pro for 14, I have traveled extensively chasing my passion for diving. I am passionate about everything diving, with a keen interest in exploration, Sharks and big stuff, Photography and Decompression theory. Diving is definitely the one and only passion that has stayed with me my whole life!

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