Here we are again at the beginning of a robust fire season. This means that many Firefighters and Law Enforcement are forced on and unable to get home. This effects everyone. Dis-regulation can happen easily when you are stuck on a fire or covering a station or patrolling an area that is affected. If you recognize the following symptoms you need to work on regulating.
Symptoms of Dis-regulation:
Increased heart rate, fear, anxiety, checking out, losing track of time, forgetting to eat/drink, irritability, freezing, memory problems, difficulty sleeping or falling asleep even when tired.
We know that CONNECTION=REGULATION. So how do we stay regulated when connection with our families can be so sporadic and distant? I encourage clients to check in whenever they can. Just a quick text to let your significant other or children or even parents know that you are thinking of them. Face time when you can, and call if you can. I am often told that when you are away, its easier to just not be in contact, but easier does not mean healthier. Making that effort goes a long way for your family, and will keep you engaged as well.
Also- utilize Peer Support if they are at the Incident Command Base. Unloading there can help you move through the trauma you may experience.