First Responders are at highest risk for mental illness and substance abuse: why many don’t seek help and what we can do.

PsychoBabble

In an effort to better understand the risk for first responders (police, medics, firefighters, military) one must first understand the foundation of risk prevention.

There are three methods of prevention: primary, secondary and tertiary.

Primary preventions are the type of interventions that aim to prevent any risk of injury, illness, or disease before they’re at risk. One of the most commonly used examples of  primary prevention is vaccinations. Another example is the D.A.R.E program (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) which would target our youth before exposure (commonly in elementary schools) as a primary drug prevention program.

Secondary preventions are the type of preventions that aim to reduce the harm of illness or injury that an individual has already been exposed to and/or at an elevated risk. Some common examples of secondary preventions are: 1) ensuring someone who is pre-diabetic changes their diet and exercises regularly to reduce the risk of…

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