Traumatic Stress

Traumatic stress occurs in many occupational groups. It results, for example, from confrontation with death or injuries. Exceptionally critical events can have consequences on health.

A traumatic event comprises many aspects. Confrontation with actual or imminent death, a serious injury or a risk to a person's own or to other persons' physical integrity are examples of this.

In the context of work, traumatic stress occurs among other things through robberies in banks or shops, through serious accidents to professional drivers, and through deployment in scenes of crisis and crime to emergency services workers. Traumatic stress thus affects employees in very different occupations.

For work design, the question arises whether companies can prevent or alleviate the health consequences of such events. Conceivable here are measures of primary prevention and acute help, as well as support from co-workers and line managers.

Current state of knowledge

A scoping review by the Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health summarises the state of scientific knowledge of traumatic stress in the context of work. In doing this, it examines the effect of occupational procedures and factors on (mental) health in the context of traumatic events at the workplace. Conceptual and methodological considerations are also a component of the review. In addition, the authors reveal research gaps and discuss options for job design.

The project "Mental Health in the Working World"

The scoping review on traumatic stress in the context of work is part of the project "Mental Health in the Working World - determining the current state of scientific evidence". The project assesses mental load factors based on the state of scientific knowledge.

For further information please refer to our German Website.