BACKGROUND: After military deployment, soldiers are at an increased risk of developing posttraumatic psychiatric disorders. The correlation of personal values with symptoms, however, has not yet been examined within a military context.
METHOD: Schwartz's Portrait Values Questionnaire (PVQ), the Posttraumatic Stress Diagnostic Scale (PDS), and the 11-item version of the Resilience Scale (RS-11) were completed by 117 soldiers of the German Armed Forces who had recently been deployed to Afghanistan (n=40 undergoing initial psychiatric treatment, n=77 untreated).
RESULTS: Logistic regression showed that the value types of hedonism (-), power (-), tradition (+), and universalism (+) were significantly correlated with the probability and severity of PTSD and whether the participant was in treatment or not. The effects were partially mediated by the RS-11 scale values.
CONCLUSIONS: Value types seem to be associated with psychiatric symptoms in soldiers after deployment. These results could contribute to the further development of therapeutic approaches.