Navigation Links
Soldiers and families can suffer negative effects from modern communication technologies
Date:3/18/2013

As recently as the Vietnam and Korean wars, soldiers' families commonly had to wait months to receive word from family members on the front lines. Now, cell phones and the internet allow deployed soldiers and their families to communicate instantly. However, along with the benefits of keeping in touch, using new communication technologies can have negative consequences for both soldiers and their families, according to a study by University of Missouri researcher Brian Houston. This research could lead to guidelines for how active military personnel and their families can best use modern communications.

"Deployed soldiers and their families should be aware that newer methods of communication, especially texting, can have unintended impacts," said Houston, assistant professor of communication in the College of Arts and Science. "The brevity and other limitations of text messages often limit the emotional content of a message. The limited emotional cues in text messages or email increases the potential for misunderstandings and hurt feelings. For example, children may interpret a deployed parent's brief, terse text message negatively, when the nature of the message may have been primarily the result of the medium or the situation."

Houston's study documented the frequency and quality of communications between soldiers and their families then examined how those results were associated with the emotions and behaviors of military children and spouses. Children who had the greatest degree of communication with a deployed parent also showed the greatest number of behavioral problems and emotional troubles. Houston suggested this may be because when kids are having a hard time they may be most likely to reach out to a deployed parent. However, that can cause a conflict for the soldier between the roles of warrior and parent.

"Bad news from home can distract a soldier from their duties and double their stress load," said Houston. "A soldier can end up dealing with both the strain of warfare and concerns about a distant child."

On the other hand, children with a deployed parent who talked about deployment with a brother or sister tended to exhibit positive outcomes, according to the study. Houston suggested this shows the importance of children experiencing parental deployment having an opportunity to connect with other children in the same situation. Houston suggested parents experiencing deployment may wish to identify opportunities for their children to connect with other young people whose parents serve in the military.

The problems with communications between soldiers and their families weren't limited to the time during deployment. Distinct challenges arose before, during and after deployment, according to the study. Upon returning home, soldier-parents faced difficulties in communicating their experiences from wartime with their families.

"Children can tell when a parent is troubled," said Houston. "For soldiers stressed by memories of war or readjustment to civilian life, it helps to talk to children about what is going on. Obviously you do not want to overwhelm children with information that is not age appropriate, but if a parent is having difficulties and no one is talking about it, then children may often feel that they are in some way to blame for the parent's situation or that the parent is angry with them."

Houston plans to use this research to develop communication best practices for military personnel and their families. Houston hopes such guidelines can help military families utilize modern communication technologies to help cope with deployment and the subsequent return to civilian life.


'/>"/>

Contact: Tim Wall
walltj@missouri.edu
573-882-3346
University of Missouri-Columbia
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Report: Strategies to prevent noise-induced hearing loss, tinnitus in soldiers
2. War causes mental illness in soldiers
3. Explosions Are Main Cause of Spine Injuries in U.S. Soldiers
4. Energy Drinks Disrupting U.S. Soldiers Sleep: CDC
5. Todays U.S. Soldiers Fitter Than Decades Ago: Report
6. Foot soldiers of the immune system
7. Physical, Sexual Assault May Raise Soldiers Suicide Risk
8. Most U.S. Soldiers May Suffer From Sleep Problems
9. Scans Show Details of Damage to Soldiers With Head Injuries
10. Why some soldiers develop PTSD while others dont
11. For highly educated women, families are an increasingly popular option
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... , ... The American Board of Family Medicine's (ABFM) Board of Directors has ... succeeding Dr. James C. Puffer upon his retirement. Dr. Newton will serve in the ... at the end of 2018. Upon assuming the role of President and CEO on ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Apple Rehab Shelton Lakes , which ... evacuation of the facility as part of a disaster drill on October 3rd. , ... and Shelton City Emergency Manager, as well as the Connecticut Long Term Care ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... Abilene, Texas (PRWEB) , ... October 13, 2017 , ... ... publication this week that explains one of the most popular and least understood books ... seems like cryptic and puzzling descriptions that have baffled scholars for centuries. Many have ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 12, 2017 , ... First Healthcare Compliance (FHC), an industry ... a range of technology and learning solutions at the 68th Annual American Healthcare ... be held October 14–18, 2017 at the Mandalay Bay Resort in Las Vegas, ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 12, 2017 , ... The American College of Medical Informatics (ACMI) will present ... the Opening Session of AMIA’s Annual Symposium in Washington, D.C. AMIA’s Annual Symposium ... Collen, a pioneer in the field of medical informatics, this prestigious award is presented ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/4/2017)... WESTWOOD, Mass. , Oct. 4, 2017  According to the Centers ... by the end of October . PhysicianOne Urgent Care is helping communities ... Westchester, NY , by offering no-cost* flu shots through ... , as mandated by certain health insurance regulations. ... The best time to get a flu shot is by ...
(Date:10/2/2017)... , Oct. 2, 2017  AllianceRx Walgreens Prime, the ... by Walgreens and pharmacy benefit manager Prime Therapeutics LLC ... brand, which included the unveiling of new signage at ... as well as at a few other company-owned facilities ... brand to patients, some of whom will begin to ...
(Date:9/28/2017)... 2017 Cohen Veterans Bioscience and Early Signal ... wearable and home sensors for real-time monitoring of patients ... a nonprofit organization focused on disruptive health solutions for ... analytical system to record and integrate behavioral, cognitive, physiological ... ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: