Two massive hurricanes.
A large earthquake in Mexico.
The horrific mass shooting event in Las Vegas on Sunday.
If you feel overwhelmed with recent events in our world, you are not alone.
Many resources exist to help us deal with these critical incidents. Allow me to share just a few.
The American Psychological Association has many resources on their site, www.apa.org. They also just posted an article, “APA Resources for Coping with Mass Shootings, Understanding Gun Violence” which details several resources, including a guide for talking with children.
SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) offers a Disaster Distress Helpline providing 24/7, 365-day-a-year crisis counseling and support to people experiencing distress related to natural or human-caused disasters. More information is available at the Disaster Distress Helpline. Call 1-800-985-5990 or Text TalkWithUs to 66746. For the deaf/hard of hearing, use your preferred relay service to call the Disaster Distress Helpline at 1-800-985-5990. Information is also available in Spanish.
The National Center for PTSD also offers information on “Coping with Traumatic Stress Reactions.” Active coping, defined as taking direct action to cope with your normal stress reactions, means accepting the impact of potential trauma on your life and taking direct action to improve things. Recommended steps include talking to others for support, distracting yourself with positive activities, learning about trauma, and engaging in relaxing activities such as muscle relaxation exercises, breathing exercises, meditation, swimming, stretching, yoga, and/or spending time in nature.
If you are caring for others, please remember to take care of yourself as well. For helpful tips, review the recommendations at the National Center for PTSD on Self-Care After Disasters.