Living through a traumatic event such as a hurricane can result in damage to structures, belongings, and even your mental health. Studies after Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Sandy examined the mental impact of experiencing a natural disaster traumatic event. In addition to short term distress, some survivors even experience Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
PTSD is a mental illness that can cause sufferers to have difficulty sleeping, angry outburst, uncontrollable feelings of guilt or sadness, and possibly even suffer flashbacks. Although initial studies on PTSD focused on soldiers experiencing war, more recently it has been accepted that any trauma (sexual assault, physical abuse, natural disasters, etc) can result in PTSD.
Common reactions to disaster can include:
Texans Recovering Together provides crisis counseling and referrals to hurricane survivors who might be experiencing some of these common reactions. Their services are free and confidential. If a client is not comfortable meeting in an office or has transportation issues, their providers can do home visits or meet in a community setting.
The Counties covered under this program and additional disaster behavioral health resources can be found at www.hhs.texas.gov/disaster-assistance. For further information on Hurricane Harvey and Texas recovery, visit the Hurricane Harvey disaster web page at www.fema.gov/disaster/4332, Facebook at www.facebook.com/FEMAharvey, the FEMA Region 6 Twitter account at www.twitter.com/FEMARegion6 or the Texas Division of Emergency Management website at https://www.dps.texas.gov/dem.