Army Psychologists: Role & Responsibilities

Before joining the army, potential recruits must undergo a psychological assessment by an army psychologist. Several tests are conducted to ensure prospective members have the mental and emotional fortitude to withstand the rigors of army service. Furthermore, these assessments may assign service members positions that best suit their skills and interests.

Training and Duties of an Army Psychologist

Army psychologists diagnose and treat mental health issues by Counselling. They may assess and treat emotional trauma. PTSD, sadness, anxiety, and insomnia plague army people. Treatment for mental disorders usually depends on their kind and severity. Army psychologists consult and treat; cognitive behavioral therapies and exposure therapy address PTSD and anxiety. Individual, group and family therapy may be employed. Army members get counseling before, during, and after deployment. Enlisted families may benefit from army psychiatrists. If an army member is deployed, their parents, wife, and children may require support adapting to separation's practical and emotional hardships. Families of fallen soldiers get grief counseling.

Responsibilities and Training of Army Psychologists to Cover

Tasks assigned to psychologists working on this initiative include:

  • Defense Personnel mental health worker.

  • Evaluate and report on Soldiers' mental health concerns.

  • Talk to the head of the mental health team to figure out how to best inform the public about these challenges and possible solutions.

  • Allow the person with mental health issues and their loved ones to talk it out.

  • Conduct preliminary psychological evaluations to help affected individuals and their loved ones make informed decisions about treatment and rehabilitation.

  • Recognize the need for mental health specialist referrals and equip persons and families to utilize them.

  • Please use what they have learned by doing psychological evaluations and getting therapy. Use only program-trained abilities.

Those specializing in army psychology help service members cope with the mental and emotional strains of deployment, deployment itself, and separation from loved ones. The primary goal of any army psychologist is to ensure that the armed forces personnel remain psychologically fit for duty. Learn the many branches of psychology practiced in the army. Multiple branches of psychology may be put to use in the armed forces:

Study Field in Psychological Science to Clinical Practice of Psychologists

Army people and their dependents can get help from clinical psychologists for various problems, including anxiety, depression, rage, crisis intervention, marital and family concerns, financial and career planning, and leadership development.

Clinical Psychology Subfields

When preparing for an army psychologist career, one may focus on a particular issue or set of symptoms, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, brain injury, suicide, addiction, or memory loss. As a psychologist working for the army, one may also choose to devote time and energy to studying and improving army psychology procedures via research.

  • Performance Pressure − Members of the army can anticipate feeling pressure on occasion. Extreme stress may trigger stress reactions. Responses to a natural catastrophe, tragedy, or crime may be extreme. Disorientation, a lowered threshold for sensory input, and unpleasant sensations are typical manifestations. Minutes after an occurrence, the body begins an acute stress reaction that may endure for hours or even days.

  • Problems with Somatization − It is typical for patients to present with somatization disorder while seeking medical attention. Constant physical manifestations are a hallmark of this illness (often non-specific and vague). Many patients persist with thorough medical examinations even after their doctors rule out any physical causes for their symptoms. The individual does not consider that any adverse life event or situation contributed to their physical difficulties' onset (or persistence).

  • Affective Disorders − Depression is characterized by persistently low mood. Although normal human emotion includes feelings of sadness from time to time, clinical depression is not the same thing as a passing blue mood. People with depression are miserable, making them feel down almost constantly. Outbursts of anger or impatience often accompany these low states of mind.

Military and Mental health

There are few studies and research findings in India about mental health-related diseases and their empirical incidence in the Indian Armed Forces. Many cases of clinical psychiatric disorders are easily treated within the military population by the military psychologists and psychiatrists at the Armed Forces hospital unit itself, even though the causes are largely unknown and likely related to the rigid structural hierarchy of the system of the armed forces.

The research evidence that we discussed at the beginning of this section may also be limited to the stigma that is socially associated with members of the armed forces, suggesting that they may not be very manly to experience a psychological or psychiatric disorder despite having received training and being judged to be mentally fit and sound. It begs whether the training was inadequate to handle the disorder's evolution or whether our staff failed to learn the difficult lessons they were required to learn.

The fact that mental and psychiatric problems can strike anybody at any moment, regardless of their gender, age, socioeconomic status, or the industry they work in, is the key to the solution. Because our nation stands on the shoulders of giants, it is especially important to consider resilience building and to address mental health issues and conflicts in the Armed Forces. If their mental health is sound and adaptable, they will be better able to deal with the traumatic issues they may encounter. The nation is better equipped to deliberate, strategize, implement, and run on resources, with a greater execution of the art of psychological warfare. Face when being deployed in difficult situations is dealt with.

Sinha (2021) investigated the suicide rate in the military despite excellent pharmaceutical and psychological assistance. Approximately 16 suicide cases were examined and investigated in the study from 2014 to 2017 at an unnamed hospital using semi-structural interviews, phone logs, and personal diaries. The bulk of suicide attempts, according to the findings, included firearms firing and were followed by a family history of depression or suicidal thoughts. To sum up, contrary to what was predicted, the stress of military service was not shown to be associated with suicide attempts.


Psychologists in the army perform psychological examinations and assist in selecting appropriate individuals for enlisting as part of their responsibilities. It is ultimately up to a recruit to choose his area of emphasis. They will also assess enlisted officers' and army personnel' emotional and psychological well-being. Army psychologists treat service members, their families, and veterans. Individual and family psych education and treatment, in addition to cognitive behavioral therapy, were a few examples. One may be required to act as a field or off-psychology specialist to teach newly recruited psychologists, internships, visiting students, and senior law enforcement officers.

Updated on: 04-Apr-2023


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