Red Cross Steps Help You Cope In The Face Of Tragedy

Cope In The Face Of Tragedy
Children are especially at risk.

People may experience a variety of feelings and thoughts after something like the explosions in Boston and Texas. The American Red Cross has information people can use to cope in the aftermath of these tragedies.

Something like this is upsetting for everyone involved. People near the emergency are affected, as well as people all over the country who may have family in the area who or people who are watching the media coverage of these tragic situations. It is difficult to understand why something like this happens or what is likely to happen in the coming days.

Children are especially at risk as they may become afraid that the event will happen again, or that they or someone in their family may be injured or killed. The damage, injuries and fatalities are difficult for them to understand. It is important to reassure children and talk to them in a calm manner. Their view of the world as a safe and predictable place is temporarily lost. How a parent or other adult reacts around the child following a traumatic event can determine how quickly and completely the child recovers.

STEPS TO HELP COPE People may be experiencing many different emotions like fear, anger, confusion, shock, disbelief, sadness and grief. These are all normal feelings after this type of event.

People’s reactions appear in different ways, not only in the way someone feels, but in the way they think and what they think about; their sleeping habits, how they go about daily living; and the way they interact and get along with others. Here are a few steps to help people cope:

  • Stay informed, but limit exposure to media coverage of the events.
  • Take care of yourself. Eat healthy, drink plenty of water and get enough rest.
  • Be patient with yourself and others. It’s common to have any number of temporary stress reactions such as anger, frustration and anxiety.
  • Stay connected with your family and other support systems. Reach out and accept help from others.
  • Encourage children: to express their feelings and thoughts. Reassure them about their safety.
  • To reach out for free 24/7 counseling or support, contact the Disaster Distress Helpline at 1-800-985-5990 or text “TalkWithUs’ to 66746.

    About the American Red Cross:
    The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.

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