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Published On: Thu, Sep 28th, 2017

Psychological Aftermath of Natural Disasters

By Dr. Mercola

With Texas, Florida and the Caribbean still reeling in the aftermath of hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, the physical destruction is readily apparent. Less easily quantified is the effect of natural disasters like hurricanes on the human psyche. Not surprisingly, a study on the impact of Hurricane Sandy, which hit the East Coast of the U.S. in October 2012, revealed that experiencing personal and property damage during the storm increased the risk of long-term post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms.1

However, as the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) points out, natural disasters affect mental health not just during the event but before and after as well. “The toll and trauma that stems from disasters can contribute to stress and anxiety, acute stress reaction and ability to self-regulate — and for some, posttraumatic stress disorder,” they note.2

If it seems like natural disasters are becoming more frequent, it’s not in your head. The number of events increased threefold from 1980-1989 to 2000-2009.3 This makes it more important than ever to be aware of the psychological toll that natural disasters exert, as well as ways Read Full Article

Source: Dr. Mercola

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