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Study Confirms Military Family Counseling Works

Beat stress. Improve your life. You have proven and easy ways at your fingertips to improve well-being and master your MilLife:

A recent study confirms these free services work to reduce stress, bolster relationships and help you to improve your performance at work and home. Nine of 10 service members and eligible family members who sought these services reported they were satisfied with them and would use non-medical counseling again, according to an independent study conducted by the RAND Corporation.

Proven effective for members of the military community

Non-medical counseling options can provide renewed resiliency and strength. Participants reported positive results after using counseling services – especially when it came to:

  • Reducing stress and anxiety
  • Increasing resilience at work
  • Improving the ways they handle problems in their personal lives

Improvements were lasting, generally maintained three months after receiving counseling.

Strength in numbers: Non-medical counseling seen as valuable

Large numbers of the military community look to non-medical counseling services to improve workplace and personal performance. In fiscal year 2015, across all service branches, Military and Family Life Counseling staff helped military-affiliated individuals through 4.5 million visits and Military OneSource counselors provide more than 170,000 non-medical counseling sessions annually.

The most common reasons service members and family members sought non-medical counseling included:

  • Family or relationship problems
  • Stress, anxiety or emotional issues
  • Help with conflict resolution or anger management

A unique understanding of military life

We get you. Non-medical counselors are people who have extensive training in military services, and many have served or lived in military families. As part of the Department of Defense, Military and Family Life Counseling and Military OneSource counselors can help you connect the dots to different programs and services. The study by the RAND Corporation showed:

  • Nearly eight of 10 participants agreed that their counselor understood military culture.
  • More than 75 percent of individuals reported that their counselor addressed their cultural, language or religious concerns.
  • About 90 percent of participants agreed that their counselor provided the services they needed to address their non-medical problems and related concerns.

Easy access to services

An overwhelming majority of participants said they appreciated the fast, reliable and flexible access to counselors in both programs. They were able to get in touch with a counselor quickly. Appointments were easy to make and accommodated their schedules.

  • More than 90 percent of individuals reported that they were satisfied with the speed of being connected to counseling staff.
  • Over 90 percent felt that it was easy to make appointments that fit their schedules.

Confidential and tailored support

Many service members and spouses are concerned that reporting a problem or seeking help will affect their military career. According to study participants, confidentiality was critical and a big reason they turned to Military OneSource and Military and Family Life Counseling services. Another reason was the individualized support provided.

  • Most individuals reported that they experienced less stress in their work and personal lives after initiating non-medical counseling.
  • More than 70 percent of participants experienced a reduction in the frequency of feeling stressed or anxious.
  • About 71 percent reported long-term reductions in difficulty coping with day-to-day demands in the three months after receiving counseling.