Trauma-related stress in Australia: contains 27 brief and readable essays by leading Australian and US clinicians, researchers, administrators and observers of the stress that often follows exposure to, or involvement in violence and brutality. The scope and scale of the problem are immense and it touches the lives of millions of Australians.
It generates massive costs in mental health, criminality, drug and alcohol use, family disruption
and lost productivity. Known to earlier generations of the military as ‘shell shock’ this debilitating spectrum of mental changes continues to bedevil large numbers of our veterans. But it also affects significant numbers of people who work in police forces, ambulance services and other helping professions who, as ‘first responders’ are often witnesses to horrific scenes. Similar manifestations of stress also affect victims of rape, child abuse, domestic violence and incarceration. The accounts presented here suggest that trauma related stress is costing industries and the taxpayer many billions of dollars. A more constructive approach to prevention, early intervention and effective treatment and rehabilitation is clearly essential. This will require not only increased research but increased cooperation and collaboration between government and other employee agencies. Trauma-related stress is having a profound effect on our social and economic well-being and a national conversation between experts, politicians and policymakers to develop and implement improved ways of preventing and treating trauma associated with stress is urgently required.
Wide societal application, Readable essays by national experts A condition that touches millions of Australians