Designing for Invisible Injuries: An Exploration of Healing Environments for Posttraumatic Stress

Nov 01, 2017

This paper examines the potential of design and the healing environment to positively contribute to the experiences of veterans working to recover from combat PTSD. Examining challenges in the physical, social, and ambient environment through veterans’ perspectives, a design studio at Washington University in St. Louis developed a series of proposals that combined outpatient therapy with a residential-based resource center. The design exploration reveals elements in the built and natural environment that uniquely resonate with veterans’ experiences and play a significant role in the approach to creating spaces for behavioral health treatment.

Valerie Greer, AIA (Washington University in St. Louis)
Emily Johnson (Washington University in St. Louis)
The Academy Journal of the AIA Academy of Architecture for Health (AAH)
Published & professionally reviewed by: 
The American Institute of Architects (AIA)

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