Forensic Psychology Professional Wellness
Throughout this course, you have examined the many roles of the police professional in both macro and micro communities. You have considered the various challenges of their specific roles, and the pressures and stresses that police professionals may experience when carrying out these roles. Whatever roles police professionals may perform, studies demonstrate that they have a high risk for premature death due to their generally unhealthy lifestyles, the stress that they experience, and the high-risk behaviors in which they engage. Therefore, to be successful as well as to live a long, healthy life, it is important that police professionals remain in good physical and psychological condition. One way to do this is to engage in wellness activities and behaviors throughout their careers. Research shows that certain wellness activities can improve physical health, mental acuity, attitudes, interpersonal skills, general adjustment, and an overall sense of well-being. Such activities can guard against certain illnesses as well as psychological repercussions of high stress.
Forensic psychology professionals face the same emotional, psychological, and physical risks and stresses as police professionals when it comes to wellness and self-care. Ultimately, forensic psychology professionals are exposed to the same crimes, criminals, victims, environments, and traumas as police professionals through their work with and in police organizations. As such, forensic psychology professionals who work with trauma victims (both the first responders as well as individuals who directly experience the trauma) are at high risk for developing vicarious trauma. In order to mitigate these risks, forensic psychology professionals must maintain their own wellness and self-care through the same strategies that they encourage police professionals to use.
To prepare for this Discussion:
• Review the following Learning Resources and think about wellness issues that forensic psychology professionals can encounter. Consider how self-care strategies for psychology professionals can apply to forensic psychology professionals working with and in police organizations.
• “Compassion Fatigue and Psychological Stress Among Social Workers: A Validation Study”
• “Professional Health and Well-Being for Psychologists”
• “Occupational Vulnerability for Psychologists”
• “Psychological Wellness and Self-Care as an Ethical Imperative”
• “Risk Factors and Self Care for Practitioners Working With Trauma Clients”
• Review the article, “In Pursuit of Wellness: The Self-Care Imperative,” and consider the wellness issues that psychology professionals may face. Consider the self-care strategies that forensic psychology professionals can use to address wellness issues when working with and in police organizations.
• Think about the forensic psychology professional role that you selected to inform your Final Project. Consider the potential wellness issues related to this role and focus on how a forensic psychology professional would prevent or mitigate these issues.
With these thoughts in mind:
Post by Day 4 a description of the role that you selected to inform your Final Project. Then, analyze the potential wellness issues related to this role, and evaluate how a forensic psychology professional would prevent or mitigate these wellness issues. Support your analysis with references to the Learning Resources.
Be sure to support your postings and responses with specific references to the Learning Resources.