- Tips for Survivors: Coping With Grief After a Disaster or Traumatic Event—In this tip sheet, SAMHSA defines and describes grief, discusses ways of coping with grief, and explains complicated or traumatic grief. The tip sheet also offers relevant resources for additional support. https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Tips-for-Survivors-/SMA17-5035
Tips for Survivors of a Disaster or Other Traumatic Event: Managing Stress—This SAMHSA tip sheet gives stress prevention and management tips for dealing with the effects of a disaster or trauma. It identifies common reactions to disasters and other traumatic events, lists tips to manage and lower stress, and highlights signs of the need for professional support. https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Tips-for-Survivors-of-a-Disaster-or-Other-Traumatic-Event-Managing-Stress/SMA13-4776
This tip sheet is also available in Spanish at https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Tips-for-Survivors-of-a-Disaster-or-Other-Traumatic-Event-Managing-Stress-Spanish-Version-/SMA13-4776SPANISH. A similar tip sheet is available in Punjabi at https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Tips-for-Survivors-of-a-Traumatic-Event-Managing-Your-Stress-Punjabi-Version-/NMH05-0209PUNJABI.
Bounce Back Now—Bounce Back Now is a free mobile app available through the Google Play and App Stores. It is intended to help people with coping and resilience after a natural disaster or incident of mass violence. Once users have created an account, they can complete regular questionnaires to assess mental health, access education and coping tools, and put together a plan for improving emotional health. There are also parenting tips for helping children and teens in coping with the emotional impacts of a disaster. https://www.bouncebacknow.org
RESOURCES ABOUT INCIDENTS OF VIOLENCE
- Tips for Survivors: Coping With Grief After Community Violence—This SAMHSA tip sheet identifies signs of grief and anger after an incident of community violence, provides useful information about to how to cope with grief, and offers tips for helping children with coping. https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Coping-With-Grief-After-Community-Violence/SMA14-4888
Mental Health Considerations After a Traumatic Event—A product of Voices Center for Resilience, a nonprofit formed after the attacks of September 11, 2001, this tip sheet highlights common reactions to acts of violence, civil unrest, or terrorism. It identifies signs of the need for professional mental health support, coping tips during short- and long-term recovery, and signs of mental illnesses that may arise in the aftermath of exposure to violence. https://media.voicesofseptember11.org/projects/tipsheets/trauma_tips_mentalhealth_001.pdf
- Recovery in the Aftermath of Workplace Violence: Guidance for Supervisors—This fact sheet from the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress (CSTS), a companion to a similar resource for workers, describes how managers and supervisors can support recovery from an incident of violence in the workplace. Suggestions include communicating with employees about what is known about the incident, offering tips to employees to help them cope with their reactions, and engaging in self-care to convey a sense of calm and control in the workplace after the incident. https://www.cstsonline.org/resources/resource-master-list/recovery-in-the-aftermath-of-workplace-violence-guidance-for-supervisors
Recovery in the Aftermath of Workplace Violence: Guidance for Workers—In this fact sheet, the CSTS notes challenges workers may face when they return to their place of employment after a violent incident. The fact sheet highlights information workers should try to get as early as possible after the event, as well as steps workers can take to support themselves in coping and accessing resilience. A companion fact sheet offers similar information to supervisors. https://www.cstsonline.org/resources/resource-master-list/recovery-in-the-aftermath-of-workplace-violence-guidance-for-workers
RESOURCES FOR CHILDREN, YOUTH, PARENTS AND OTHER CAREGIVERS, AND SCHOOLS
- Understanding Child Trauma—This web page from SAMHSA presents statistics on child trauma, which may be experienced as part of a natural or human-caused disaster, and lists signs of traumatic stress in children and youth. It also offers tips for parents and other caregivers for helping children and youth to cope with trauma. Links are also provided to downloadable infographics in English and Spanish provided by the SAMHSA National Child Traumatic Stress Initiative. https://www.samhsa.gov/child-trauma/understanding-child-trauma
Psychological First Aid for Schools (PFA-S) Field Operations Guide, 2nd Edition—Developed by the National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) and the National Center for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, this guide defines PFA-S, a model that school communities can use to support students, their families, and staff immediately after a natural or human-caused disaster. Appendix C of the guide includes handouts for responders, parents and families, and students after a disaster. https://www.nctsn.org/resources/psychological-first-aid-schools-pfa-s-field-operations-guide
- Age-Related Reactions to a Traumatic Event—In this information and tip sheet, the NCTSN provides an overview of how children and adolescents may react to a traumatic event, including a natural or human-caused disaster that they experience as traumatic. This resource describes reactions typical within specific age ranges and offers tips for families, doctors, and school personnel to help children and adolescents cope. https://www.nctsn.org/resources/age-related-reactions-traumatic-event
- Helping Youth after Community Trauma: Tips for Educators—In this 1-page tip sheet, the NCTSN identifies 10 ways youth may react to community traumas such as natural or human-caused disasters and suggests ways for educators to respond to these reactions and support youth in coping. The tip sheet also advises educators to find professional mental health support for youth—and for themselves—as needed. https://www.nctsn.org/resources/helping-youth-after-community-trauma-tips-educators
- Parent Guidelines for Helping Youth after the Recent Shooting—In this 3-page tip sheet released shortly after a shooting, the NCTSN describes how such an event may affect children and teens as well as parents and other caregivers. The tip sheet lists reactions common among people of all ages, offers coping tips for caregivers, and suggests ways for caregivers to support children and youth in talking about and managing their reactions. https://www.nctsn.org/resources/parent-guidelines-helping-youth-after-recent-shooting This resource is available in Spanish at https://www.nctsn.org/resources/guia-para-los-padres-para-ayudar-los-jovenes-despues-de-un-tiroteo-reciente.
- Psychological Impact of the Recent Shooting—This document from the NCTSN lists reactions people may have to a shooting and related experiences (such as loss of loved ones and disruption of routines). It describes grief reactions, depression, and physical reactions, and it highlights ways to cope effectively with reactions to a shooting. https://www.nctsn.org/resources/psychological-impact-recent-shooting
- Recovery From Large-Scale Crises: Guidelines for Crisis Teams and Administrators—In this tip sheet, the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) describes what to expect in schools after disasters and other crises and how school crisis teams and administrators can support the school community in coping and recovery. NASP identifies steps administrators and crisis teams can take at different points after the crisis, from immediately after the crisis to more than a year later. https://www.nasponline.org/resources-and-publications/resources-and-podcasts/school-climate-safety-and-crisis/school-violence-resources/recovery-from-large-scale-crises-guidelines-for-crisis-teams-and-administrators
RESOURCES FOR DISASTER RESPONDERS
- Tips for Disaster Responders: Preventing and Managing Stress—This SAMHSA tip sheet helps disaster response workers understand, prevent, and manage stress. It describes various stressors for responders during deployment, lists signs of stress, suggests ways to prepare for stress management prior to deployment, and highlights ways to manage stress during and after deployment. https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Preventing-and-Managing-Stress/SMA14-4873 This tip sheet is available in Spanish at https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Tips-for-Disaster-Responders-Preventing-And-Managing-Stress-Spanish-Version-/SMA14-4873SPANISH.
- Emergency Responders: Tips for Taking Care of Yourself—This online article from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) emphasizes the importance of responder self-care and presents steps responders can take before, during, and after deployment to manage stress and avoid burnout and secondary traumatic stress. Suggestions are provided for working with other responders on stress management and maintaining habits to support health and optimal functioning. https://emergency.cdc.gov/coping/responders.asp
- First Responders and Recovery Workers: Responding to a Traumatic Event—In this tip sheet, the nonprofit organization Voices Center for Resilience provides an overview of impacts that responding to acts of violence, civil unrest, or terrorism can have on responders. The tip sheet lists steps leaders can take in support of the mental health of their teams, tips for workload and stress management, and suggestions for trainings for responders to complete in support of their mental health during disaster response. https://voicescenter.org/tip-sheets/trauma/responders
- Psychological First Aid: How You Can Support Well-Being in Disaster Victims—This fact sheet from the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress explains how disaster response workers can use Psychological First Aid to help people in distress after a disaster. The fact sheet highlights the core goals of Psychological First Aid, as well as do’s and don’ts of helping survivors of a disaster. https://www.cstsonline.org/resources/resource-master-list/psychological-first-aid
TRAUMATIC STRESS AND RETRAUMATIZATION RESOURCES
- Tips for Survivors of a Disaster or Other Traumatic Event: Coping With Retraumatization—In this tip sheet, SAMHSA defines retraumatization as "reliving stress reactions experienced as a result of a traumatic event when faced with a new, similar incident," notes that retraumatization is common, and identifies ways to cope. The tip sheet lists events that may lead to retraumatization, highlights retraumatization signs and symptoms, and offers suggestions for coping. https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Tips-for-Survivors-of-a-Disaster-or-Other-Traumatic-Event-/sma17-5047 This tip sheet is available in Spanish at https://store.samhsa.gov/product/tips-survivors-disaster-or-other-traumatic-event-dealing-re-traumatization-spanish-version/PEP20-01-01-025.
Media Coverage of Traumatic Events: Research on Effects—This online article for mental health and substance use disorder treatment professionals provides an overview of research on the effects of intense media exposure following a disaster. This article describes the association between media coverage of traumatic events and stress symptoms and closes with suggestions for practitioners in offering guidance to patients. https://www.ptsd.va.gov/professional/treat/type/media_coverage_trauma.asp
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES FOR ACUTE NEEDS
- SAMHSA Disaster Distress Helpline—The SAMHSA Disaster Distress Helpline (DDH) provides free, confidential crisis counseling and support to people in distress due to natural and human-caused disasters. The DDH is available 24/7, on all days of the year, via talk or text to 1–800–985–5990. The line also offers support in Spanish (people who call or text should press 2 for this option) and several additional languages other than English. People who are deaf or hard of hearing or who have other speech or hearing disabilities can use the texting option or, if they would like support in American Sign Language (ASL), they can call the DDH’s toll-free number via videophone-enabled device or click the “ASL Now” link at the DDH website. https://www.samhsa.gov/find-help/disaster-distress-helpline
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline—The SAMHSA-funded National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a source of support available 24/7 to people in crisis, including challenging reactions to disasters. Call 1–800–273–TALK (1–800–273–8255), or, for support in Spanish, call 1–888–628–9454. https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org The website is available in Spanish at https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/help-yourself/en-espanol.
A disaster event often brings out strong emotions. People can call or text the SAMHSA Disaster Distress Helpline’s toll-free number (1–800–985–5990) and receive immediate counseling. This free, confidential, and multilingual crisis support service is available to anyone experiencing psychological distress as a result of this event. People who call and text are connected to trained and caring professionals from crisis counseling centers in the network. Helpline staff provide confidential counseling, referrals, and other needed support services.
The SAMHSA Disaster App allows disaster behavioral health responders to navigate resources related to pre-deployment preparation, on-the-ground assistance, and post-deployment resources. Users can also share resources from the app via text message or email and quickly identify local mental health and substance use disorder treatment services. https://store.samhsa.gov/product/samhsa-disaster
Dari and Pashto Translations