Mental Health of the Firefighter

Mental Health is the psychological well-being and adjustment to the ordinary demands of life. Firefighting is the above and beyond demands of "ordinary life".

Firefighter rates of mental health issues are on the rise. Firefighters are statistically proven to deal with PTSD in conjunction with every day demands in life.

Take a moment to consider your mental health. If you needed an x-ray, an eye exam, or physical, you would get it.   Make mental health part of your regular health assessment.

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Recognizing PTSD in Firefighters: 5 Warning Signs

"Have your firefighters’ and paramedics’ backs.”

At the kitchen table or in the bunk room, if you notice a change in an individual’s behavior or mood, be on the lookout for these five warning signs of PTSD:

1. Isolation from others
2. Disturbed sleep
3. Increased irritability
4. Decreased interest in significant activities
5. Self-destructive or reckless behavior"

"Be honest about your own experience.”

Sometimes, it’s easier to recognize PTSD in others rather than ourselves. If you are experiencing any of these five hidden warning signs of PTSD, take action.

1. Intrusive memories or thoughts of a traumatic event
2. Avoidance of thoughts, feelings or external reminders of the event
3. Feelings of numbness
4. Hypervigilance or exaggerated states of fear
5. Persistent, negative beliefs about yourself and the world

Ignoring or keeping quiet about these warning signs can be dangerous. PTSD is a real health problem that needs to be treated. Recognizing the warning signs and talking about the issue helps connect people to the help they need. 

Recognizing PTSD in Firefighters: 5 Warning Signs Above information is taken from the International Association of Firefighters Recovery Center.