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First responders are often the primary line of defense for communities in the event of a natural or man-made threat. They typically include paramedics, police officers, firefighters and a variety of emergency medical responders. Due to the nature of their professions, first responders often witness traumatic events which can lead to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

The National Institute of Mental Health defines PTSD as "a disorder that develops in some people that experienced a shocking, scary or dangerous event." While nearly everyone will experience a range of reactions after a traumatic incident, those who continue to feel stressed or frightened even when they're no longer in danger may be suffering from PTSD.

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Denny Jacob

Denny Jacob is an associate editor for NU PropertyCasualty360. Contact him at [email protected].