How does PTSD affect a person’s work?

On Behalf of | Oct 23, 2019 | Workers' compensation

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is often linked to traumatic events like assaults or serious accidents. It can also be a factor in certain workplaces, especially for people who are emergency responders or firefighters. PTSD has a range of significant effects on a person, and employers must take the right steps to accommodate people who are struggling with this mental disorder. The Center for Workplace Mental Health offers the following information.

Even if a person has experienced a traumatic event, it can still be difficult to determine whether PTSD is an issue. Along with being examined by a mental health professional, it also helps to understand the symptoms of PTSD. People with PTSD often experience problems with depression and anxiety after the traumatic event. Intrusive reminders of what occurred are also common, and these thoughts may be triggered by certain circumstances similar to those that led up to the traumatic incident. Because of these triggers, a person may attempt to avoid situations considered dangerous or risky.

PTSD makes it very difficult to keep gainful employment. Rates of work absences are higher for people with PTSD, which can lead to disciplinary measures from an employer. People with PTSD also experience an increased need for medical care, which causes more absences to occur.

Employers can help workers with PTSD adjust to the working environment. When medical care is needed, employers should be flexible when it comes to making that employee’s work schedule. Employers can also set up more offices for workers, so they can remain free of distractions and triggers. Workplaces must ensure all employees feel safe on the premises by taking the proper security steps, such as alarm systems.