Unfortunately, in the modern world, wars, natural disasters, terrorist acts, and fires, have become more frequent. It is precisely for such emergencies that we need to develop the correct line of behavior that will help preserve not only our life but also our physical and mental health.
Our consciousness is designed in such a way that most people try to stop the flow of negative information. It is not typical for us to imagine ourselves in some emergency, but it is easier to think: “This will never happen to me because it will never happen.” However, real life shows that this is not always the case. There are factors under the influence of which our consciousness begins to perceive a certain situation as extreme.
Getting into the conditions of war, accidents, catastrophes
Emotional influences usually arise in connection with danger to human life and health (newness of the situation, its complexity, impossibility to make a decision due to lack of information).
1. Great physical overload caused by excessive exertion of strength and endurance.
2. Prolonged stay in a state of hunger and thirst.
3. Prolonged stay in uncomfortable climatic conditions (heat, cold, lack of oxygen).
4. Influence of various radio frequencies, noises, and vibrations.
It is under the influence of these factors that a feeling of emotional and physical tension develops as well as the inability to adequately assess the situation and make decisions, depression, panic, fear, and shock. In addition, negative news, mental attacks, and emotional impact on consciousness do not stabilize the situation but complicate it.
Therefore, the degree of survival in extreme conditions directly depends on the ability to protect yourself and your loved ones from the impending threat. If we at least to some extent know what actions need to be taken to protect ourselves physically, then the skills to stabilize our own mental state are almost absent.
Some individuals are distinguished by the ability not only to survive in an extreme situation but also to organize help for other people, but some people immediately fall into states of fear, panic, and shock, from which only a professional can bring them out. Certain reasons contribute to this.
Personality is formed under the influence of social environment and upbringing. Therefore, the indicator of a person’s security or susceptibility to danger is not so much an innate quality but a result of development. Insufficient formation of individual personality qualities (willpower, courage, determination), of course, manifests itself in extreme situations.
A person’s vulnerability to danger is significantly increased by emotional imbalance, the inability to quickly allocate attention and distinguish the main object of danger among many others, insufficient endurance, and excessive (too much or too little) propensity to risk.
Therefore, to provide psychological first aid to oneself and loved ones in an extreme situation, it is necessary not only to learn certain ways of managing one’s consciousness, but also the ability to recognize people’s reactions to an emergency and to communicate with them correctly.
Depending on the qualities of their personality, people tend to show mental reactions to an emergency to a greater or lesser extent. The most well-known reactions to an extreme situation are panic, shock, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
Panic is a state of terror in which a person who is in an emergency has a sharp loss of self-control. The main symptoms of panic attacks are intense fear and a feeling of imminent death. A person in such a state cannot say what exactly he is afraid of, it is difficult for him to concentrate and control himself. Rapid heartbeat, pulsation in the stomach, shortness of breath, and sweating often occur. The main signs of panic, regardless of its cause, are:
- rapid heartbeat and pulse;
- increased sweating;
- trembling, tremor;
- the feeling of suffocation;
- chest pain, discomfort;
- dizziness that can lead to fainting;
- loss of self-control.
Panic occurs in the mass of people as a certain emotional state, which is the result of either a lack of information about some incomprehensible, frightening news, or an excess of this information. Repeatedly, the lack of an idea of real danger led to reckless actions such as jumping from the windows of the upper floors. In those moments, it seemed less painful than waiting for help or looking for another way of salvation.
In a state of panic, a person is simply unable to look for alternative solutions and does not see the consequences of made decisions.
Shock is a severe general reaction of the body to a physical or mental injury, which generally begins with active actions and gradually turns into complete passivity.
If a shock reaction has occurred, it is practically impossible to protect oneself psychologically, because, at the initial stage, a person is in an excited state, and then contact with the outside world is broken. However, it is possible to help people close to you who find themselves in such a state. It is necessary to influence the consciousness of a person who is in a state of shock reaction by giving him clear and simple instructions for action in an affirmative intonation. At the same time, try to touch the person, patting him on the head or shoulders, and direct him to the safest place.
Post-traumatic stress disorder is a complex of human reactions to trauma or disturbance, which in most people causes fear, horror, and helplessness. It can include certain human behavior that occurs a month or even half a year after the events that caused the injury. A person seems to experience this event again and again and cannot live a normal life.
If you or your loved ones notice signs of post-traumatic stress disorder, in which a person is deprived of the opportunity to live and work productively, returning to the past situation again and again, provide them with emotional support. Explain that you understand her feelings and condition and are willing to talk to her as long as necessary. However, remember that the main method of treatment for this disorder is psychotherapy, and the auxiliary method is drug therapy. In both cases, you or your loved ones will have to turn to specialists. The sooner you do it, the sooner you will return to a normal life.
Remember that optimists who perceive the surrounding world positively, as well as people who have a stable psyche, strong will, and self-control skills, survive in extreme situations more often and come out of post-traumatic states much faster. Work on yourself, develop, study the peculiarities of your personality, identify your “weaknesses” and develop tactics for your own behavior. Because it is the psychological reserves of a person that are most often decisive for survival in most extreme situations. Stay safe!