We cannot change the things we see in our work,
but we can change how we react to what we see or experience.
103 firefighters died by suicide in 2017, compared to 93 firefighter line-of-duty deaths, according to the Ruderman Family Foundation, a philanthropic organization that fights for the rights of people with disabilities. The study also found that little has been done to address PTSD and depression in responders, even though they are five times more likely than civilians to suffer from symptoms...
Mental health care is something we have been hearing more often in EMS and Fire. This has been growing in response to the amount of people affected in this line of work. We are seeing more and more depression, drug abuse, alcohol abuse, excess eating, PTSD and even suicides.
We found that since we were small kids, up to when we finish our Healthcare, EMS, Fire, Police, Dispatch and Rescue training, we are taught many things that fast track us to depression, addiction, PTSD and suicide.
From EASPA’S Foundation, a non profit organization in Argentina, we have also been working on PTSD for some years now. We are an emergency care training facility. For several years we have noticed that it was great working on PTSD, but we started thinking if there could be another way, a way of preventing it.
We started doing a lot of research on this. If 50 years ago, somebody came over and told us that a heart problems could be prevented, we would have just denied it. Today we know we can work on the diet, reducing stress, do exercise, etc, and that helps reduce heart problems. We cannot eradicate heart problems, but we can reduce them by focusing on the risk factors.
Three years ago, we started finding answers to our questions when we started looking more into the Humanistic Psychology. It was when we focused on the risk factors that lead to depression, addiction, PTSD and suicide, where we realized that we were doing things the wrong way.
We need to start changing the way we see ourselves, what being in this line of work really is, and learning tools to be able to cope with the feelings we have.
Healthcare, EMS, Fire, Police, Dispatch and Rescue a very stressful lines of work, and if we don’t start changing how we see ourselves or how we deal with our emotions, we are doomed.
Once completed the seminar, you can submit a short essay (300 words) about the lecture and what feelings you had, to be able to get a participation certificate sent to your email.