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When the distress associated with the experience of disaster is too frequent, too intense or lasts for too long

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When the disaster impacted individual finds themselves constantly ruminating on the disaster experience, or being preoccupied with the possibility of future threatening situations

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When the distress associated with the event does not begin to subside over a matter of weeks

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When distress escalates and begins to interfere with everyday life

Quick tips

Provide psychoeducation about the concept of ‘processing’ and the importance of making sense of what happens to us.

Provide psychoeducation about the importance of gradually moving away from avoidant coping styles.

Encourage disaster-impacted individuals to take naturalistic opportunities to talk about the event, or encouraging more structured attempts to writing about the disaster experience.

Do you know how to

Provide psychoeducation about the importance of coming to terms with disaster?

Describe the relationship between intrusive, unwanted memories of the disaster and avoidant coping?

Elicit common posttraumatic attributions?

Support disaster-impacted individuals to gently engage with their memories of disaster events, either through conversation or by writing?

Determine if you are personally in the position to listen to stories of disaster if asked to?

Relevant Resources

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