Post traumatic stress disorder - PTSD

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Dealing with Emotional Responses after First Aid

Understanding Emotional Impact

After responding to a first aid emergency, especially involving CPR and AED use, individuals often experience various emotional responses.

  • Feelings of Overwhelm: The entire experience can leave you feeling overwhelmed.
  • Doubt and Reflection: It may lead to doubts about your skills and decisions made during the incident.
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD): PTSD affects people differently and can persist for varying durations post-event.

Effects of PTSD

Common effects of PTSD include:

  • Flashbacks
  • Nightmares
  • Panic attacks
  • Depression
  • Fear and stress
  • Short temper
  • Personality changes
  • Avoidance behaviours

These symptoms may alter behaviour and cause avoidance of triggering situations.

Guidance on Coping with PTSD

The World College of Psychiatrists offers guidance:

  • Talk Therapy: Discuss the incident with a counsellor, friend, doctor, or family member.
  • Maintain Normalcy: Keep regular life patterns to prevent the incident from dominating your life.
  • Return to the Scene: Consider revisiting the location and discussing the event with others present.
  • Exercise Caution: Be mindful, especially when driving, if concentration is affected.
  • Seek Professional Help: Consult a medical professional if symptoms become overwhelming.

Coping with the Outcome

Reflect positively on your actions:

  • Do Your Best: In a medical emergency, all you can do is your best.
  • Focus on Helping: Take pride in the fact that your actions helped someone in need.

Remember, your intervention can make a significant difference, despite the emotional aftermath.