Policemen, firefighters and emergency health workers are exposed to acute work-related stressors, such as disasters, acts of violence, helping seriously injured children and adults, suicide and multiple deaths. These critical incidents may be described as unusual occurrences that are sudden, overwhelming and emotionally challenging. The aim of this book is to present theoretical frameworks and empirical data concerning stress and resilience among first responders (police officers, fire-fighters, Civil Protection personnel, paramedics).
The present book makes three contributions to the field of resilience among first responders in the aftermath of potentially traumatic events. First, it shows how the interaction between risk and protective factors may compensate for the exposure to critical incidents. Secondly, it shows that resilience factors such as self-efficacy, collective efficacy, social support and coping strategies may mitigate the impact of critical incidents involvement. Thirdly, it shows that first responders’ quality of life encompasses positive and negative mental health outcomes and each of these may be related to different predictors.