Like HowStuffWorks on Facebook!

Stress In the Workplace


Traumatic Events on the Job

Many people are in jobs they don't like or aren't good at. The quick answer is to get a job they like or one that better matches their skills, abilities and interest — easier said than done. Some clients have no idea what kind of job they would like or what kind of job would be better. Worse, they don't have a clue on how to go about finding out this information.

Some jobs are inherently dangerous, and others can suddenly become so. Criminal justice personnel, firefighters, ambulance drivers, military personnel and disaster teams witness many terrible scenes and are exposed to personal danger routinely. They usually handle such incidents capably. But occasionally a particularly bad episode will stay with them, appearing in memory flashbacks and nightmares. Sleep disturbance, guilt, fearfulness and physical complaints may follow. Even ordinary jobs can become traumatic: A co-worker, boss or client physically threatens an employee; a bus crashes on a field trip; an employee is robbed or taken hostage; a shooting occurs. Such events can create post-traumatic stress disorder.


More to Explore