Peer Support

Williamson County EMS Peer Support LogoWCEMS Peer Support

Managing emergencies is tough work. As EMS workers we are exposed to challenges every shift that some people may never have to experience. Williamson County EMS Peer Support is staffed by people that understand the importance of physical and mental fitness. We're your brothers and sisters, your EMS family and we're here to help.

It is and always will be confidential.

View a list of peer support team members.

Stress

Definition of Stress

Stress is a physical and psychological response to a perceived threat, challenge, or change.

Acute Stress

An acute stress response usually occurs immediately but can occur up to t24 hrs after an incident. This is the body's "flight or flight" response and is a direct result of the sudden release of large amounts of adrenaline, glucose, and cortisol into the bloodstream.

Delayed Stress

Occurs 48rs or more after an incident. Symptoms are similar to that of an acute stress response and can be misleading due to the delayed onset.

Cumulative Stress

Often referred to as "Burnout", cumulative stress occurs over time. It is often the result of a lack of work/life balance.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

PTSD is the result of exposure to a trauma that is so extreme, that it is beyond an individual's coping capacity. This results in repeated activation of the "fight or flight" mechanism.

Effects of Stress

PhysiologicalPhysiological & BehavioralCognitive
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea/Vomiting/Diarrhea
  • Tremors/chills
  • Lack of coordination
  • Profuse Sweating
  • Dizziness
  • Tachypnea
  • Tachycardia
  • Hypertension
  • Headache/Body aches
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Anxiety/Depression
  • Fear/Guilt/glucose
  • Isolation/Anger/Irritability
  • Loss of interest in job, family, or hobbies
  • Changes in eating habits
  • Nightmares
  • Replaying the incident over and over
  • Increased alcohol, nicotine, or drug intake

  • Slower thought processes
  • Difficulty making decisions
  • Confusion or disorientation (especially to time and place)
  • Decreased problem-solving ability
  • Memory Loss
  • Short attention span