Emergency personnel (firefighters, police officers, and emergency medical personnel) face multiple critical incidents throughout their career by definition of their job. Repeated exposure to traumatic calls can increase dissociative symptoms in emergency personnel (Marmar, 1996) and left untreated can affect not only individual mental health but also job performance in the form of re-experiencing the trauma during work, displaying symptoms of avoidance and dissociation, and job burnout. The mental health care of this population is of the utmost importance not only from the perspective of a future clinical psychologist but also from a public health standpoint. These men and women are the first responders to all emergencies and they perform their duties without question. How do emergency workers cope with this psychological stress? Little research focuses on the self-care of emergency personnel and the research that has been done addresses negative coping skills. This study explored the coping strategies (both adaptive and maladaptive) of firefighters and emergency medical personnel. Results from this study indicate that emergency workers coped with repeated exposure to critical incidents with training, humor, social support, physical activity, and for some-counseling.
|Advisor:||Ossege, Jennifer M.|
|Commitee:||O'Neill, Margarita, Scott, Jennifer L.|
|School:||Union Institute and University|
|School Location:||United States -- Ohio|
|Source:||DAI-B 79/01(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Keywords:||Coping strategies, Critical incidents, Firefighters, First responders|
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