Advertisement

Major Factors that Influence Behavioral Health in the Fire Service

  • Karen F. DeppaEmail author
  • Judith Saltzberg
Chapter
Part of the SpringerBriefs in Fire book series (BRIEFSFIRE)

Abstract

Could the firefighter emergency responder population also benefit from training on resilience skills, as school-age children and military populations have? In order to investigate this and recommend an appropriate intervention strategy, this chapter looks at what the literature says about the key factors that influence firefighter behavioral health. In a review of literature that identifies vulnerabilities and protective factors associated with behavioral health in the fire and emergency services, several factors turn up repeatedly. They provide clues to the interventions that might be most effective in a resilience training approach with this population.

Keywords

Social Support Ptsd Symptom Emotional Exhaustion Collective Efficacy Compassion Fatigue 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

References

  1. Bandura, A. (1982). Self-efficacy mechanism in human agency. American Psychologist, 37(2), 122-147.Google Scholar
  2. Bandura, A. (1999). A social cognitive theory of personality. In L. Pervin and O. John (Eds.), Handbook of personality (2nd ed., pp. 154-196). New York, NY: Guilford Publications. (Reprinted in D. Cervone and Y. Shoda [Eds.], The coherence of personality. New York, NY: Guilford Press).Google Scholar
  3. Baumeister, R. F., and Leary, M. R. (1995). The need to belong: Desire for interpersonal attachments as a fundamental human motivation. Psychological Bulletin, 117(3), 497-529.Google Scholar
  4. Baumeister, R. F., Vohs, K. D., Aaker, J. L., and Garbinsky, E. N. (2013). Some key differences between a happy life and a meaningful life. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 8(6), 505-516.Google Scholar
  5. Benight, C. C., and Bandura, A. (2004). Social cognitive theory of posttraumatic recovery: The role of perceived self-efficacy. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 42(10), 1129-1148.Google Scholar
  6. Benight, C. C., Swift, E., Sanger, J., Smith, A., and Zeppelin, D. (1999). Coping self-efficacy as a mediator of distress following a natural disaster. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 29(12), 2443-2464.Google Scholar
  7. Boscarino, J. A., Figley, C. R., and Adams, R. E. (2004). Compassion fatigue following the September 11 terrorist attacks: A study of secondary trauma among New York City social workers. International Journal of Emergency Mental Health, 6(2), 57-66.Google Scholar
  8. Bryant, R. A., and Guthrie, R. M. (2007). Maladaptive self-appraisals before trauma exposure predict posttraumatic stress disorder. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 75(5), 812-815.Google Scholar
  9. Carver, C. S., Scheier, M. F., Miller, C. J., and Fulford, D. (2009). Optimism. In C. R. Snyder and S. J. Lopez (Eds.), Oxford Handbook of Positive Psychology (2nd ed., pp. 303-311). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  10. Chamberlin, M. J. A., and Green, H. J. (2010). Stress and coping strategies among firefighters and recruits. Journal of Loss and Trauma, 15(6), 548-560. doi: 10.1080/15325024.2010.519275.
  11. Cicognani, E., Pietrantoni, L., Palestini, L., and Prati, G. (2009). Emergency workers’ quality of life: The protective role of sense of community, efficacy beliefs and coping strategies. Social Indicators Research, 94(3), 449-463.Google Scholar
  12. Cohen, G. L., and Sherman, D. K. (2014). The psychology of change: Self-affirmation and social psychological intervention. Annual Review of Psychology, 65, 333-371.Google Scholar
  13. Creswell, J. D., Lam, S., Stanton, A. L., Taylor, S. E., Bower, J. E., and Sherman, D. K. (2007). Does self-affirmation, cognitive processing, or discovery of meaning explain cancer-related health benefits of expressive writing? Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 33(2), 238-250.Google Scholar
  14. Crum, A. J., and Langer, E. J. (2007). Mind-Set Matters Exercise and the Placebo Effect. Psychological Science, 18(2), 165-171.Google Scholar
  15. Crum, A. J., Corbin, W. R., Brownell, K. D., and Salovey, P. (2011). Mind over milkshakes: Mindsets, not just nutrients, determine ghrelin response. Health Psychology, 30(4), 424-429.Google Scholar
  16. Crum, A. J., Salovey, P., and Achor, S. (2013). Rethinking stress: The role of mindsets in determining the stress response. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 104(4), 716-732.Google Scholar
  17. Dweck, C. S. (2008). Can personality be changed? The role of beliefs in personality and change. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 17(6), 391-394.Google Scholar
  18. Farnsworth, J. K., and Sewell, K. W. (2011). Fear of emotion as a moderator between PTSD and firefighter social interactions. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 24(4), 444-450.Google Scholar
  19. Frazier, P., Berman, M., and Steward, J. (2002). Perceived control and posttraumatic stress: A temporal model. Applied and Preventive Psychology, 10(3), 207-223.Google Scholar
  20. Grant, A. M., and Sonnentag, S. (2010). Doing good buffers against feeling bad: Prosocial impact compensates for negative task and self-evaluations. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 111(1), 13-22.Google Scholar
  21. Heinrichs, M., Wagner, D., Schoch, W., Soravia, L. M., Hellhammer, D. H., and Ehlert, U. (2014). Predicting posttraumatic stress symptoms from pretraumatic risk factors: A 2-year prospective follow-up study in firefighters. American Journal of Psychiatry, 162(12), 2276-2286.Google Scholar
  22. Hobfoll, S. E. (1991). Traumatic stress: A theory based on rapid loss of resources. Anxiety Research, 4(3), 187-197.Google Scholar
  23. Jamieson, J. P., Mendes, W. B., and Nock, M. K. (2013). Improving acute stress responses: The power of reappraisal. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 22(1), 51-56.Google Scholar
  24. Keller, A., Litzelman, K., Wisk, L. E., Maddox, T., Cheng, E. R., Creswell, P. D., and Witt, W. P. (2012). Does the perception that stress affects health matter? The association with health and mortality. Health Psychology, 31(5), 677-684.Google Scholar
  25. Lambert, J. E., Benight, C. C., Harrison, E., and Cieslak, R. (2012). The Firefighter Coping Self-efficacy Scale: Measure development and validation. Anxiety, Stress and Coping, 25(1), 79-91.Google Scholar
  26. Lee, S. H., and Olshfski, D. (2002). Employee commitment and firefighters: It’s my job. Public Administration Review, 62(S1), 108-114.Google Scholar
  27. Maddux, J. E. (2009). Self-efficacy: The power of believing you can. In C. R. Snyder and S. J. Lopez (Eds), Oxford handbook of positive psychology (2nd ed., pp. 335-344). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  28. McCammon, S., Durham, T. W., Allison Jr, E. J., and Williamson, J. E. (1988). Emergency workers’ cognitive appraisal and coping with traumatic events. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 1(3), 353-372.Google Scholar
  29. McGonigal, K. (2015). The upside of stress: Why stress is good for you, and how to get good at it. New York, NY: Penguin Random House.Google Scholar
  30. McKay, B., Lewthwaite, R., and Wulf, G. (2012). Enhanced expectancies improve performance under pressure. Frontiers in Psychology, 3, 1-5.Google Scholar
  31. Milen, D. (2009). The ability of firefighting personnel to cope with stress. Journal of Social Change, 3(1), 38-56.Google Scholar
  32. Poulin, M. J., and Holman, E. A. (2013). Helping hands, healthy body? Oxytocin receptor gene and prosocial behavior interact to buffer the association between stress and physical health. Hormones and Behavior, 63(3), 510-517.Google Scholar
  33. Prati, G., and Pietrantoni, L. (2010). The relation of perceived and received social support to mental health among first responders: A meta-analytic review. Journal of Community Psychology, 38(3), 403-417.Google Scholar
  34. Regehr, C. (2009). Social support as a mediator of psychological distress in firefighters. The Irish Journal of Psychology, 30(1-2), 87-98. doi: 10.1080/03033910.2009.10446300.
  35. Regehr, C., Hill, J., Knott, T., and Sault, B. (2003). Social support, self-efficacy and trauma in new recruits and experienced firefighters. Stress and Health, 19(4), 189-193.Google Scholar
  36. Reivich, K. and Shatté, A. (2002). The resilience factor: 7 Essential skills for overcoming life’s inevitable obstacles. New York, NY: Broadway Books.Google Scholar
  37. Rutter, M. (1987). Psychosocial resilience and protective mechanisms. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 57(3), 316-331.Google Scholar
  38. Ryan, R. M. and Deci, E. L. (2000). Self-determination theory and the facilitation of intrinsic motivation, social development, and well-being. American Psychologist, 55(1), 68-78.Google Scholar
  39. Shakespeare-Finch, J., Rees, A., and Armstrong, D. (2014). Social support, self-efficacy, trauma and well-being in emergency medical dispatchers. Social Indicators Research, 1-17.Google Scholar
  40. Sherman, D. K., Bunyan, D. P., Creswell, J. D., and Jaremka, L. M. (2009). Psychological vulnerability and stress: the effects of self-affirmation on sympathetic nervous system responses to naturalistic stressors. Health Psychology, 28(5), 554-562.Google Scholar
  41. Sonnentag, S., and Grant, A. M. (2012). Doing good at work feels good at home, but not right away: When and why perceived prosocial impact predicts positive affect. Personnel Psychology, 65(3), 495-530.Google Scholar
  42. Taylor, S. E. (2010). Mechanisms linking early life stress to adult health outcomes. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 107(19), 8507-8512.Google Scholar
  43. Van Orden, K. A., Witte, T. K., Cukrowicz, K. C., Braithwaite, S. R., Selby, E. A., and Joiner Jr, T. E. (2010). The interpersonal theory of suicide. Psychological Review, 117(2), 575-600.Google Scholar
  44. Varvel, S. J., He, Y., Shannon, J. K., Tager, D., Bledman, R. A., Chaichanasakul, A., Mendoza, M. M., and Mallinckrodt, B. (2007). Multidimensional, threshold effects of social support in firefighters: Is more support invariably better? Journal of Counseling Psychology, 54(4), 458-465.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.BrookevilleUSA
  2. 2.University of PennsylvaniaWynnewoodUSA

Personalised recommendations