Stress After Tragedy

A tragic event creates a tremendous amount of stress and anxiety for those both directly and indirectly affected. Common reactions to tragedy include:

  • Disbelief and shock
  • Fear and anxiety about the future
  • Disorientation; difficulty making decisions or concentrating
  • Apathy and emotional numbing
  • Nightmares and recurring thoughts about the event
  • Irritability and anger
  • Sadness and depression
  • Feeling powerless
  • Changes in eating patterns; loss of appetite or overeating
  • Excessive crying
  • Headaches, back pains and stomach problems
  • Difficulty sleeping or falling asleep
  • Increased use of alcohol and drugs

Tips For Coping with Stress

It’s normal to have difficulty managing your feelings after a tragedy. Because everyone experiences stress differently, don’t compare yourself with others around you or judge other people’s reactions and emotions.

Here are some tips for coping with stress:

  • Talk about it
  • Spend time with friends and family
  • Take care of yourself
  • Take one thing at a time
  • If you can, help
  • Avoid drugs and excessive drinking
  • Ask for help if you need it