Natural reaction of the mind and body to demand place on it --Pleasant of Unpleasant.
Eustress vs. Distress
Eustress is a stressor that is perceived to be positive. Distress is a stressor that is perceived to be negative.
is prolonged unrelieved stress also called cumulative stress.
can be acute or chronic.
Critical Incident Stress (CIS)
A heavy duty stress that causes psychological and physical discomfort for 2 days to a month.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Creates major distress and long lasting disruptive changes in person's life.
Physiology of stress
A stressor that is in demand, real or imagined A stressor that can be social, psychological, spritual/physical Psychological changes are life saving. A threat or demand is perceived and interpreted by the cerebral cortex.
3 parts of the nervous system
Central Nervous System Sympathetic Nervous System Parasympathetic Nervous system
Affects of Sympathetic Nervous System
Heart rate, Blood pressure, breathing, sweating Huge blood flow changes Senses and perception changes Parasympathetic NC is turned off or reduced
Stress external to agency
Frustration with judicial system Lack of consideration by the courts for scheduling officer appearance Perceived lack of public support Negative or distorted media coverage of policing Officers dislike of the decisions and interest of city council, county commissioners, or legislature
Stress internal to agency
Policies that are offensive to officers Poor training and inadequate career development opportunities lack of identity and recognition for good performance Poor economic benefits, working conditions, equipment excessive paperwork
Stress in work itself
Rigors of shift work frequent exposure to life's misery Boredom, interrupted by the need for sudden action fear and dangers of the job constant responsibility for protecting other people
Stressor confronting the individual officer
Fears regarding job competence, individual success, and safety Necessity to conform Necessity to take a second job or to further education altered social status in the community due to attitude changes
law enforcement personalities and characteristics
make a good safe officer but can often wreak havoc hypervigilance--- state of hyper alertness emotional control can result in the inability to emotionally engage at home sensation seeker
family and personal
marital children parents financial
Stressors related to the law enforcement career journey
begin career optimistic, enthusiastic, and idealistic new experiences and relationships forged under challenges non law enforcement friendships may fade after graduation, a rookie loos to the veterans for how to to the job.
is the elevated alertness of surroundings required of law enforcement officers for survival.
Reticular Activating System (RAS)
Determines the the level of alertness necessary at any given time. Also engages the sympathetic nervous system causing heightened alertness and awareness increasing pulse, breathing body temperature, blood pressure, blood sugar and energy.
3 basic approaches to stress management
avoid alter adapt
visualization- mental imagery guided Imagery unguided imagery thought stopping/blocking/focusing tactical breathing- breath for count of 4, hold for 4,exhale progressive muscular relaxation
heart rates above 175 bpm
an officer may experience auditory changes, loss of peripheral vision, and depth perception
heart rates above 200 bpm
an officer may exhibit irrational behavior such as repetitive non productive activities.
Syptoms associated with High Symphathetic NS
visual changes time perception changes hearing perception changes memory changes heightened sense of alertness, elevated heart rate and breathing
Visualizing successful performance of skills in a variety of situations
Breath in for a count of 4, hold for count of 4 and exhale for count of 4.
5 phases of transition that experience traumatic events.
it is common department/investigative procedures to remove the gun from officer's possession as evidence
General US population statistics
Frequency of suicide in the US: 1 every 16 minutes Women attempt more often, men more likely to complete suicide Men more often use firearms; women more often use drugs or poisons.
Law enforcement statistics
1970-1999 has shown a gradual reduction of law enforcement felony deaths despite increasing gang activity, availability of automatic weapons, drug trafficking.
Risk Factors (SAD PERSONS)
sex age depression previous exposure to suicide ethanol/alcohol/drug abuse rational thinking social support system lacking organized plan no spouse or significant other sickness
Other Suicidal thoughts of officers
Loss/change in important relationship expresses hopelessness, depression, guilt change in sleep and/ or appetite minimal social support alcohol/ substance abuse legal problems/financial problems under investigation talks about death or wanting to die
Ask Intervene Don't keep a secret Locate help Inform supervisor Find someone to stay with the person
23% of the officers had serious alcohol problems and 10% had serious drug problems.
Had 53% that came to work with a hangover, and that the "average" officer drank alcohol on the job almost eight days every half year.
Drives officers to seek extreme means to help them relax.
Symptoms of Drug and Alcohol abuse
failed attempts to cut back or quit for whatever reason difficulty enjoying life declining performance feeling guilty drink alcohol or frequently hung over on job need a drink to get going
coworker can help in 4 ways
be aware and recognize the problem urge the person to seek help encourage the person after they seek help keep in mind that avoiding the problem only contributes consider resources