Monday, July 16, 2012

Emotional Health Hurts Too

Thousands of Utah neighbors were forced to leave their homes during this summer’s wildfire season, with some properties being permanently damaged. Being forced to vacate in fear that they may never see their home again, Red Cross shelters across the state housed many frightened evacuees during their anxious waits. Although most structures have been saved and people have been able to return to their homes, undergoing a situation like this can be devastating and traumatic; causing emotional health issues that can last long after the tragedy is over.

Disasters like these can bring about unknown feelings leaving victims unaware of how to take care of their emotional health and how to get their lives back in a routine. When people experience a disaster or other stressful life event, they may react with:

·         Feeling physically and mentally drained

·         Having difficulty making decisions or staying focused on topics

·         Becoming easily frustrated on a frequent basis

·         Frustration occurring more quickly and more often

·         Arguing more with family and friends

·         Feeling sad, tired, numb, lonely, or worried

·         Changes in appetite or sleep

 In most cases, people will typically feel better after a few days. Others find that their stress does not go away as quickly and it is compromising their relationships, careers, and happiness. For those who fall into the latter, it will take time to get your life back in order but it is important to remember the essentials:

·         Take care of your safety

·         Eat healthy

·         Get some rest

·         Stay connected with family and friends

·         Be patient with yourself and with those around you

·         Set priorities

·         Gather information

·         Stay positive

 If your situation worsens, you may need to reach out for additional assistance. For more resources, contact your local Red Cross Disaster Mental Health or contact the Disaster Distress Helpline by texting ‘Wildfire’ to 66746.


Benjamin Blake said...

Emotional injuries can be very hurting indeed. Those who have an emotional loss need nothing but a word of solace. It acts as a balm to cool their soothing nerves.

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