First Aid Crisis Counselling

Facts About Crisis Counselling

  • All human beings face crises and psychological trauma throughout life. How we respond depends on our personality, past experiences and illnesses
  • Earlier, it was thought that so-called crisis therapy (ie psychological debriefing) prevented post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Today, you know that it is very important to take individual considerations in the preparation of the crisis and the further course
  • If, on the other hand, you have developed a truly post-traumatic stress reaction (PTSD) cognitive therapy effect

What is a crisis?

“Crisis” means a more severe mental strain, where one’s previous life experience and ability to cope is insufficient to handle the situation.

It is common to share crises into life crises and traumatic crises. But the reactions have many common features. The amount of strain needed to trigger a crisis is different from person to person. It is the exception that you go through life without crises. Most people experience one or more crises throughout the life.

Crisis Therapy / debriefing

Many believe that in cases of crises, accidents and the like, they always need psychological help. However, the impact of emergency aid (so-called debriefing) is not documented in scientific studies. In some studies, one can even detect a detrimental effect of crisis aid. The incidence of post-traumatic stress disorder ( PTSD ) was higher in the group of persons who were selected (randomized) to receive emergency aid than in a corresponding control group that did not receive emergency aid. However, the immediate patient satisfaction with emergency aid is well documented.

Most researchers agree that in times of crisis, for example, traffic accidents, armed robbery or the like need regular human health care. One also needs to take care of the immediate needs, such as security, warmth, something to drink, a phone, so you can call your relatives and so on. Obligatory crisis aid, as used in Denmark, is not necessary, however, and has been abandoned in several countries.

One of the problems of this mandatory crisis aid may be that it sends out a signal that people are not able to take care of themselves and that they must not feel pain, anxiety and insomnia, for example. a serious loss. Nor can it be ruled out that the minutes review of the symptoms of post-traumatic stress, which is often used, may in some cases cause ongoing reactions in severely stressed people. If you become aware of otherwise harmless symptoms, they can grow in strength in worried people.

It is thus important whether immediate care is given by colleagues, passers-by or by professionals (doctors or psychologists) that it targets the individual’s needs and assumptions and is not schematic. One can not exclude the fact that some people refuse to talk about it, in fact, can protect them from being overwhelmed in the acute situation.

The effect of debriefing is therefore doubtful. There is, however, no doubt that cognitive therapy has effect in people who have subsequently developed symptoms of the crisis reaction, see below.

life Crises

Also called development crises. These are reactions triggered by events that most people experience during a lifetime. examples:

  • Divorce, getting married, getting children, moving from home, the children move away from home
  • Own illness, related person’s loss, loss of related person through death or similar
  • Retire on retirement, job loss, start new job, big financial loss, loss of dignity / reputation

Traumatic crises

These are sudden and unexpected events that threaten life and health. examples:

  • Rape
  • Violence
  • Accident
  • Bullying
  • Suicide in the local community, or in people looking up to or knowing
  • terrorist acts
  • War
  • Torture (for example refugees)

crisis reactions

People respond very differently when they experience an acute crisis. The reactions may vary from light to very strong and possibly. lengthy. Previously, it was thought that there was a schematic course that went back to many. Thus, the crisis reaction was divided into the following manner. It is reproduced here, bearing in mind that this model has never been scientifically proven. On the contrary, several studies show that people react very differently. People typically jump in and out of the different phases in a way that does not necessarily follow each other, as the model assumes. This means that you sometimes return to previous phases or run phases. It must therefore be taken with a very large spruce salt:

1. Choking phase – lasts from seconds to days after the trauma

  • Expressed by shock and denial
  • Feelings of unreality
  • apathy
  • It may be difficult to reach the person with practical information in this phase. Messages should be simple and clear if they are to be understood because the ability to focus is reduced
  • Changed time experience
  • Bodily stress symptoms such as sweating, nausea, palpitation, tremor, abdominal pain, etc.
  • Hypertension

If the symptoms (especially the physical) are very violent during the shock phase, there are studies that suggest that it is muted, for example. With sedative medication or a so-called beta-blocking drug can prevent later development of PTSD. During this phase, the person first and foremost needs care, contact and conversation, as he wishes. Some want to sleep or stay alone – and it can actually help them to process it happier.

2. Reaction phase – from days to weeks

  • One tries to find an opinion about what has happened
  • Fear, fear and anger are typical reactions
  • Sleep disturbances and nightmares
  • sadness
  • helplessness
  • Relief of the event or possibly. previous crises with despair and crying
  • Defence mechanisms are put in place. One tries for example. to deny or displace what has happened. You will also often look for placement of guilt

Experience the affected symptoms of stress reaction: anxiety, insomnia, flashback etc. An offer of cognitive therapy is important. This treatment has been scientifically proven to have a good effect and to prevent the development of actual PTSD.

3. Repair and processing phase – weeks to months

  • Here you begin to reconcile what has happened
  • The strongest emotions associated with the crisis are decreasing
  • Less agony and gradually more outgoing activity
  • Defence mechanisms are not as prominent

Again, it is important that possibly. Symptoms lead to treatment, as mentioned above.

4. The new orientation phase

  • Here again you find profits to continue their habitual life
  • Old interests resume
  • New challenges are taking place
  • “Life goes on”

To get over the crisis

Many become upset when they are told that it is important to “get over it”. How can you ever get over a horrible accident, or lose someone left off? Many people feel guilty about not having to take care anymore. “The least I can do is to mourn,” some think.

There are crises that you never get over, and it does not have to be the point either. Processing it happened is not the same as forgetting. The point is that life, regardless of what happened, goes on. You get better in everyday life if you can settle with what has happened.

The key to reaching such a reconciliation is to many people talk about what has happened. Taking care of the crisis, you may never be able to mourn. It is therefore recommended to talk with friends or relatives if it happened. Perhaps conversation with a professional, eg. psychologist, be a help.

Again, it is important to be aware that the need is very different from person to person. There is not one real way to process the event. It is absolutely crucial to find a balance between processing the incident and making it an unreasonably large part of one’s further life.

What genes can you get later?

Crisis experiences can cause or trigger a wide range of mental and psychiatric disorders. Among people experiencing traumatic crisis, anxiety disorders (eg post-traumatic stress PTSD) are relatively frequent. If you miss someone who is close, there is a risk of developing a depression .

The severity of the trauma and the person’s degree of vulnerability are factors that determine whether one reacts with mental illness during a crisis. If you have previously had anxiety or depression, the risk is for example. bigger. In extreme trauma (eg terrorist acts, torture), many people will be affected by mental genes in the period thereafter.

If you get PTSD or depression, it is important to get treatment quickly. This is due to the fact that these two modes are experienced in a difficult way, the longer they have been on.

Some people try to dampen their symptoms with alcohol abuse, which will further aggravate the situation.

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