When at a workplace that handles explosives or explosive materials, there is always a risk that there will be a fire and explosion. Even if an employer takes steps to reduce the risk to employees, that hazard is ever-present.
In the event that an explosion does take place in the workplace, employees have a long road of recovery ahead of them. There are mental and physical injuries that impact survivors, both of which have to be addressed to help the individual recover.
Mental symptoms of trauma
Following a major injury and traumatic event, individuals often suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder and other mental illnesses. Post-traumatic stress symptoms include night terrors, anxiety and depression, agoraphobia, and other issues. Individuals who have been disfigured or suffered serious burns may struggle with depression or anxiety when returning to work or having to go back to a normal routine.
Some common symptoms of mental illness following a traumatic event include:
- Sensitivity to changes in your environment
- A lack of daily routine or exercise
- Feelings of grief
- Emotional reactions
- A desire to separate yourself from others
These are just a few possible symptoms of an underlying mental health illness following a traumatic event.
On top of the potential for mental stress following a traumatic incident, individuals caught in an explosion are likely to have serious injuries. Burns, lacerations, impact injuries and others all could be present.
Some common injuries following an explosion include:
- First, second or third-degree burns
- Impact injuries from flying debris
- Broken bones
- Head injuries
- Internal injuries
After an explosion, the first thing that has to happen is for those caught in the explosion to receive emergency medical care. Depending on exposure, there could be concerns about toxins or chemical exposure as well as other risks to the individuals' lives. It is extremely important to have these employees receive care as quickly as possible to help reduce the spread of injury from an explosion.
For those who are in recovery, it's necessary to understand that everyone recovers at a different rate. While one person may recover and return to work, others may struggle to get back to a place of physical and mental health. Support in the form of medical care, family support and financial aid help those who are recovering from a serious traumatic incident focus on their health instead of on financial losses, an inability to work or other problems.