As you have no doubt heard by now, the South was devastated by an outbreak of storms and tornadoes that left communities and lives destroyed in its wake. Even if you were not directly affected by this, if you were please accept our sincerest condolences and DO NOT hesitate to contact us with information and how we can help, it has made all of us think more about our families and how we react to disasters.I went out and researched some signs of post disaster stress disorder. Here are some tips to dealing with disasters mentally after it has struck:
Things to remember when trying to understand disaster events
• No one who sees a disaster is untouched by it.
• It is normal to feel anxious about you and your family's safety.
• Profound sadness, grief and anger are normal reactions to an abnormal event.
• Acknowledging your feelings helps you recover.
• Focusing on your strengths and abilities will help you to heal.
• Accepting help from community programs and resources is healthy.
• We each have different needs and different ways of coping.
• It is common to want to strike back at people who have caused great pain. However, nothing good is accomplished by hateful language or actions.
Ways to ease the stress
• Talk with someone about your feelings-anger, sorrow and other emotions-even though it may be difficult.
• Don't hold yourself responsible for the disastrous event or be frustrated because you feel that you cannot help directly in the rescue work.
• Take steps to promote your own physical and emotional healing by staying active in your daily life patterns or by adjusting them. This healthy outlook will help yourself and your family. (i.e., healthy eating, rest, exercise, relaxation, meditation.)
• Maintain a normal household and daily routine, limiting demanding responsibilities of yourself and your family.
• Spend time with family and friends.
• Participate in memorials, rituals and use of symbols as a way to express feelings.
• Use existing support groups of family, friends and church.
• Establish a family emergency plan. Feeling that there is something that you can do can be very comforting.
Source: The Center for Mental Health Services, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
For more information check out This Link.
There are several ways you can help out the victims of these deadly tornadoes no matter where you are:
Online: go to http://www.alredcross.organd click on the "donate now" link on the homepage
Call: 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767) and you will be prompted to a menu that includes financial donations
Text: "Red Cross" to 90999. A response will include two options for donations, either to Japan or for Disasters: domestic and spring storms.
You can also get in touch with the various chapters of the American Red Cross in Alabama by following the links below:
Northern Alabama http://www.redcrossrelief.org/
Mid-Alabama (Birmingham) http://www.alredcross.org/general.asp?SN=8618&OP=8619&IDCapitulo=DRGYJ0Q5XZ
Central Alabama (Montgomery) http://www.montgomeryarc.org/
Southern Alabama http://www.redcrossalcoast.org/