At Peer Support Central, we specialize in providing peer support and critical incident stress management (CISM) training for first responders and service members, as well as for corporate leaders. Peer support works by having trained professionals use their life experience to help others recover from and cope with traumatic events, addictions, mental health issues, and more.
Does Peer Support Work?
Studies have shown that peer support can improve self-reported health status, increase self-care skills, expand an individual’s knowledge of their disease or condition, decrease depression, and heighten self-esteem. A vital part of peer support is mutual respect between peer specialists and peers, and an understanding that everyone is treated equally. This is different from a typical therapy experience, where there can be a disconnection between patient and therapist.
People who can benefit from peer support:
- People with chronic physical illness: Peer support groups exist all over the world for people with diseases ranging from diabetes to cancer. Oftentimes, this peer support includes support for family members and spouses who have lost loved ones to terminal illness, or whose loved ones have been diagnosed with a terminal illness.
- Mental health: Mental health peer support can be beneficial for anyone who has depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, suicidal thoughts or actions, bipolar disorder, or any other mental health issues. This includes people who have PTSD, which is one area that Peer Support Central specializes in.
- Drug and alcohol abuse: Peer support is considered a best practice by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration because in terms of substance abuse, peer support has been shown to reduce hospitalizations and relapses, as well as increase social support and participation in the community.
- Shared experiences: Anyone who has a shared experience can benefit from peer support. This includes people of a shared cultural background or ethnicity, people who have experienced abuse, neglect, or assault, and people who identify as part of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender community, among others.
Peer Support Central Can Help
Peer Support Central specializes in critical incident stress management training and peer support for military personnel, veterans, first responders, and others in high-stress, high-trauma positions. While we focus on certain groups, we believe that anyone who has a shared experience can benefit from peer support, and encourage people to find the right peer support group for them. If you are a veteran or first responder looking for support in overcoming struggles, mental health concerns, or simply need someone to talk to, contact Peer Support Central today to find out how we can help you.