Combat veterans are more likely to experience depression and anxiety symptoms in late life, compared with veterans who did not see combat.

Researchers from Oregon State University analyzed data from the Veterans Affairs Normative Aging Study, which tracked participants’ health over time. The team looked specifically at the relationship between combat exposure and depression and anxiety symptoms.

The researchers found increased rates of depression and anxiety in late life among combat veterans. This was not true for veterans who were not exposed to combat.

Researchers say memories of stressful events appear to have a greater impact on combat veterans’ mental health over time. And these individuals may need extra support in later life.


Oregon State University. (2019, July 2). Combat veterans more likely to experience mental health issues in later life. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 9, 2019 from