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Chapter 23 Behavioral Emergencies. Behavioral Emergencies (1 of 2) Behavior is how a person acts. Behavior that leads to violence or other inappropriate.

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Presentation on theme: "Chapter 23 Behavioral Emergencies. Behavioral Emergencies (1 of 2) Behavior is how a person acts. Behavior that leads to violence or other inappropriate."— Presentation transcript:

1 Chapter 23 Behavioral Emergencies

2 Behavioral Emergencies (1 of 2) Behavior is how a person acts. Behavior that leads to violence or other inappropriate activities is known as a behavioral emergency.

3 Behavioral Emergencies (2 of 2) Several factors can change a person’s behavior: Low blood sugar level Lack of oxygen Inadequate blood flow to the brain Head trauma Mind-altering substances Psychogenic or psychiatric illness

4 Depression Depression is one of the most common and treatable of all mental illnesses. Several types Reactive, major or clinical, and bipolar Depression is believed to be due to a chemical imbalance in the brain. Untreated depression is the main cause of suicide.

5 Recognizing Depression (1 of 2) Severity of symptoms varies with individuals and also varies over time. Persistent sad, anxious, or empty moods Feelings of hopelessness, guilt, worthlessness Loss of interest in hobbies and activities that were once enjoyed Decreased energy, fatigue

6 Recognizing Depression (2 of 2) Difficulty concentrating, remembering Insomnia, early-morning awakening, oversleeping Appetite and/or weight loss or overeating Thoughts of death or suicide Restlessness, irritability Persistent physical symptoms that do not go away with treatment

7 Care for Depression Do not discourage crying. A depressed person needs empathetic attention and reassurance and needs to know the first aider is concerned. It is usually best to interview a depressed person in private. Ask open-ended questions such as, “Tell me how you feel.”

8 Suicide Suicide is defined as any willful act that ends one’s own life. Each year, about 30,000 Americans commit suicide. The male rate of suicide is more than three times that for females. Common methods include: Firearms, hanging, poisoning, jumping, and carbon monoxide poisoning

9 Suicide Suicide is often attempted by people who are depressed or have alcoholism. About 60% of all suicide victims previously attempted suicide. About 75% gave clear warning that they intended to kill themselves. When a person phones to threaten suicide, try to keep the suicidal person on the line until EMS reaches the scene.

10 Recognizing a Potential Suicide Victim (1 of 2) If you observe someone: Getting their affairs in order (paying off debts, making or changing a will) Giving away articles of personal or monetary value Obtaining a weapon or writing a suicide note

11 Recognizing a Potential Suicide Victim (2 of 2) If someone says: Life isn’t worth living. My family would be better off without me. Next time I’ll talk enough pills to do the job right. Nobody feels the way I do. I feel like there is no way out.

12 Care for a Potential Suicide Victim (1 of 2) If someone tells you they are thinking about suicide, you should take their distress seriously. Talk openly and matter-of-factly about suicide. Be willing to listen. Be nonjudgmental. Show interest and support. Do not dare him or her to do it.

13 Care for a Potential Suicide Victim (2 of 2) Do not act shocked. Do not be sworn to secrecy. Offer hope that alternatives are available, but do not offer glib reassurance. Remove means of suicide such as guns or stockpiled pills. Get help from person or agencies specializing in intervention.

14 Emotional Injury First aid for an emotional “injury” means being supportive of people with emotional injuries. Emotion first aid often goes hand in hand with physical first aid. Although most emotional reactions are temporary, they are seriously disabling and may upset others.

15 Typical Reactions (1 of 2) Feeling shaky, perspiring profusely, and becoming nauseated are common reactions in the face of an emergency. Most people are able to regain their composure reasonably quickly.

16 Typical Reactions (2 of 2) Whatever the situation, you will have your own emotional reactions toward the victim. These reactions can enhance or hinder your ability to help the person. Victims who can see the first aider’s calmness, confidence, and competence will be reassured.

17 Recognizing Aggressive, Hostile, and Violent Behavior When you are faced with aggressive, hostile, or violent behavior, size up the situation before you do anything. Avoid responding to anger. Reassure the person you there to help. Notify the police if you are unable to communicate with a person who is dangerous to him- or herself or others.

18 Care for Aggressive, Hostile, and Violent Behavior (1 of 2) Use these guidelines if you must try to calm a person who is upset: Acknowledge that the person seems upset. Maintain a comfortable distance. Encourage the person to state what is troubling him or her. Do not make quick moves. Respond to the person’s questions. Do not argue with a disturbed person.

19 Care for Aggressive, Hostile, and Violent Behavior (2 of 2) Tell the truth — do not lie. Do not “play along” with the person’s visual or auditory disturbances. Involve trusted family members or friends. Be prepared to stay with the person for an extended period of time. Never leave the person alone. Avoid unnecessary physical contact. Maintain eye contact.

20 Sexual Assault and Rape Rape is generally defined as forcible sexual intercourse without the consent of one participant. Categories include: Acquaintance rape, date rape, marital rape, and stranger rape Rape is a traumatic experience that disrupts the physical, psychological, social, and sexual aspect of a victim’s life.

21 Care for a Victim of Sexual Assault or Rape Every effort should be made to understand the victim’s feelings. Convince the victim to seek counseling through community resources and to report the crime to the police. Ask the victim not to change clothes or bathe because doing so can alter legal evidence. Care for any injuries incurred during the attack.

22 Child Abuse and Neglect More than 2.5 million cases of child abuse and neglect cases are reported each year. Of these, 35% involve physical abuse, 15% involve sexual abuse, and 50% involve neglect. Child abuse and neglect are usually divided into four categories: physical abuse, neglect, sexual abuse, and emotional maltreatment.

23 Recognizing Child Abuse and Neglect (1 of 2) Physical abuse Any injury that cannot be explained Sexual abuse Fearful behavior Abdominal pain, genital pain or bleeding, urinary tract infection Extreme sexual behavior inappropriate for the child’s age

24 Recognizing Child Abuse and Neglect (2 of 2) Emotional abuse: Sudden change in self-confidence Abnormal fears, nightmares Attempts to run away Emotional neglect Failure to gain weight Desperately affectionate behavior Large appetite and stealing of food

25 Care for Child Abuse and Neglect Give appropriate first aid for injuries. Do not accuse parents or caregivers, especially at the scene. Report any suspected abuse to the local welfare and social service agency responsible for investigating the problem. Report what you saw and heard, not what you think.

26 Domestic Violence Domestic violence, also known as partner abuse or spouse abuse, occurs when one person inflicts physical or emotional injury upon another person they have a relationship with. May be the single most common source of serious injury to women.

27 Recognizing Domestic Violence The following injuries should raise suspicion: Bruises or injuries on the head, neck, chest Injuries inconsistent with explanation Substantial delay between when the injury occurred and when the victim sought help Injuries during pregnancy Evidence of alcohol or drug abuse Needs medical care as a result of suicide attempt or rape.

28 Care for Domestic Violence Talking with the suspected abuser about the problem is not likely to help. If you are not aware of immediate danger, but you suspect abuse, check with social service agencies. Call the police if the person is in immediate danger. First aid includes calling and treating any injuries.

29 Elder Abuse Elder abuse ranges from passive neglect to active assault and includes emotional abuse. Elder abuse occurs most often in women older than 75 years. Burns are a common form of elder abuse.

30 Recognizing Elder Abuse (1 of 2) Physical injury: Questionable injuries such as bruises, cuts, burn or rope marks, and broken bones that cannot be explained. Sudden changes in behavior, comments about being battered Refusal of the caregiver to allow you to visit the older person alone.

31 Recognizing Elder Abuse (2 of 2) Lack of physical care Dehydration, malnourishment, weight loss, poor hygiene Bed sores, soiled bedding, unmet medical needs Unusual behaviors Agitation, withdrawal, fear or anxiety, apathy, reports of being treated improperly

32 Care for Elder Abuse Talking with the suspected abuser about the problem is not likely to help. If you are not aware of immediate danger, but you suspect abuse, check with social service agencies. If you suspect elder abuse in an institutional setting, report your concerns to your state long-term ombudsman.

33 Care for Elder Abuse (2 of 2) Call the police if a person is in imminent danger. First aid includes calling when needed and treating any injuries.


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