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Psychology Today article - How to Help Survivors of Extreme Climate Events

 

Hi everyone, with the recent devastation faced in the Caribbean and parts of the USA from Hurricane Ian, it's timely for us to highlight that extreme climate events can negatively impact the mental health of survivors.

The article linked to below was written by Elaine Miller-Karas MSW, LCSW and published in Psychology Today on 30 September 2022.

https://www.psychologytoday.co...treme-climate-events

For us in the Caribbean, in particular, who have weathered numerous hurricanes and related climate events, while there are repeated calls from public authorities to prepare for those events and what physical steps to take following such events, too little emphasis is given to the mental health impacts of climate events.

Whether due to the pervasive stigma in the region around mental health or for other reasons, our people are seldom encouraged by disaster management professionals to seek mental health support as part of disaster response.

Nonetheless, research shows that "the most reported mental health conditions in the aftermath of extreme weather events and natural disasters are post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) along with depression, anxiety, suicide, and substance abuse disorders" (Cianconi et al., 2020).

The article outlines seven (7) suggested interventions based on lessons learned by the Trauma Resource Institute from its experience helping communities following man-made and natural hazard events.

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