The Worst Is Over: What To Say When Every Moment Counts

“One day, maybe sooner, maybe later, someone you love will be in an emergency situation. An elderly parent, a spouse, a child. Maybe you’ve taken CPR. More than likely, you have a First Aid book on the shelf. But when the crisis hits, after you’ve called 911 and, if appropriate, propped up the victim’s head or feet, what do you do? What do you say? ‘Hang in there, Joe,’ or ‘Don”t die on me, damn it,’ may be heartfelt but is not exactly helpful. “But there ARE words, and ways of saying them, that are not only helpful, but can turn the situation around, can positively affect Joe’s heart rate, temperature, breathing, in fact his cardiovascular, limbic, endocrine, circulatory and respiratory systems.” That is how THE WORST IS OVER begins. This book has been called “the ‘bible’ for crisis communication by The International Journal of Emergency Mental Health. And in the years since it was first published we have received letters from all over the world telling us how true those words are…and how helpful when every moment matters. The Worst Is Over: What to Say When Every Moment Counts is a book that is changing the way all of us—from first responders and health care workers to neighbors and family members—are speaking to each other in times of medical emergencies, trauma, and crisis. This in-depth guide to the protocol of Verbal First Aid™ is a revolutionary method of using the power of words to promote healing in emergency situations. Research indicates that saying the right words at the right time in the right way can change the outcome of critical care, alter the chemicals the body generates, and set the course of recovery for people even before they arrive in the emergency room. People in crisis are in an altered state of consciousness while experiencing an emotional crisis or medical emergency, which is precisely why what you say is as important as what you do. At such times, words act as commands to the autonomic nervous system, which regulates bleeding, blood pressure, body temperature, muscle contractions, interpretations of pain, even emotional reactions. The right words can actually change the medical outcome. And the right words said in a frightening situation may help shift the memory from one of trauma to a memory of rescue and perhaps even courage. Because we are a mind-body, physically and emotionally words can harm or words can heal. While Verbal First Aid had its birth in the dramatic world of emergency rescue, it does not stop there. Verbal First Aid is the language of healing and can be used wherever and whenever the human heart is vulnerable. It is not only useful with asthma attacks and car accidents, but it can also be a life-saver when dealing with a loved one struggling with chronic pain, fighting the fear of cancer, or suffering from nightmares. The principles involved in using language to connect with the body and spirit for healing apply anywhere, everywhere, to all of us whenever sensitivity, understanding, kindness, and conviction are required. And isn’t that all the time? Medical professionals and first responders across the country and around the world have discovered this protocol and are using it to calm, relieve pain, promote healing, and save lives. And all of us, because we all have words and the ability to use our empathy and kindness, are ultimately equipped to help start the healing and change the outcome for the better. Will you know what to say when every moment counts? With this book and the protocol of Verbal First Aid, you can be that invaluable resource.



Judith Prager


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