1. FACT: Percent of PTSD reported in general population-----8% Among Fire Fighters= 15-20% 2. Rates of Suicide on the increase
3. Increase in problems regarding behavioral Health---There is still a negative stigma attached to reaching out. for counseling assistance/ behavioral health wellness
• What does P.T.S.D. cost? 4-6 billion $ in two years Note: 50% of professional Fire Fighters are veterans with double exposures to traumas. Can be 100% disabling but does not have to be.
Fire Fighters have increased rates of PTSD symptoms from job traumas 7% of those reporting go out on early retirement
PTSD is the only diagnosis that requires a specific causative event. PTSD symptoms are in the following clusters.
1. Re-experiencing of traumatic even
2. Avoidance of reminders of traumatic event.
3. Numbing of emotions following the traumatic event. 4. Increased arousal (e.g., nightmares, jumpy)
5. Impairment of functioning on and off of the job.
FACTS It doesn't have to end a career
Doesn't mean going postal
Is very real
Stigma is also very real
Won’t magically heal with time
Other behavioral health problems associated with P.T.S.D.
Increased violence—both marital and family
What predicts P.T.S.D. in Fire Fighters?
Lack of Support (Station’s team has decreased social support)
A prior diagnosis of PTSD
Clinically depressive symptoms
Increased negative appraisal (negative attitude) before a post traumatic event.
Increased drinking to cope
A combination of low social support and high stress
What can help?
Reduce the stigma
Provide evidence supported resources
Ask if you see warning signals
Educate and empower each other
• Consider pre-employment assessments
• What to look for:
Environment: City and culture
Teams: Do individual crews upport wellness?
Individuals: people are good at knowing the mental health of peers
Peer support. -------IFD. 317-283-6360, HAMILTON CO departments and Zionsville
FD. CALL LOCAL 4416 317.773.8805
EAP-most departments have one.
Finding a therapist that uses Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (best research)
Community based: AA, NA
Psychological first aid / Resilience Training
Leadership coaching to reduce stigma
Education: Fact vs. Fiction
Policy clarification to line Fire Fighters
• What does FDNY Peer Support Program look like? ** Peer Support Program
Education/Training with trusted Fire Fighters (Peers)
Training for recruits
Information on website
Inform how to identify PTSD
Inform resources in community
Education campaigns: various topics/posters/presentations