First Aid/Critical Incident Stress & Victim Death
What is Critical Incident Stress?
Any emergency that involves a severe injury or death is a critical incident. This incident could be amplified should the emergency involve a family member or friend. The stress that these incidents cause may overwhelm a first aider and shut down their ability to cope. This is what is known as critical incident stress (CIS). This condition may have a great impact on the first aider suffering from it, and if left un-treated, this stress may lead to a more serious condition known as post-traumatic stress syndrome.
Signs of CIS
- May not perform well at their job.
- May seem pre-occupied.
- Poor concentration
- Change in appetite
- Unusual behavior
CIS requires professional help to avoid Post-Traumatic Stress Syndrome. However, there are supplements to professional treatment that will help such as:
- Relaxation techniques
- Avoiding drugs and alcohol
- Eating a balanced diet
- Getting enough rest
- Talking with peers
More information can be found at the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation http://www.icisf.org/