When disaster strikes, the ffects ripple out as if in a pond and reach faracross the community. In the wakeof calamities, our reliance on oneanother is revealed. We discover theroad map to healing is lit by smallmercies, sparked by concerns forcommunity that express somethinglarger than ourselves.
Disasters come in all sizes andshapes in our province: the SouthernAlberta floods that pushed some100,000 people from their homesand businesses in 2013; the SlaveLake fire that forced the evacuationof thousands of the town’s 7,000residents; the hailstorms thatinevitably flatten farmers’ cropsevery summer. A disaster canalso be a tree in your backyard thatcrashes through the roof duringa windstorm.
Disaster is indifferent to wealth,health, age or geography. It does notdiscriminate in taking away what weall value: our safety, our possessions,our peace of mind and the normalityof everyday life.
When we repair and rebuildour homes, pave new roads andstrengthen bridges following adisaster, we are doing more thanbrick-by-brick fixing—we arerebuilding community health.
Being emotionally prepared for traumatic eventsLearning about and using healthy coping skills to overcome daily challenges and stress can helpyou and your family maintain good mental health. These same skills can help you better dealwith disasters and emergencies.
During or after a disaster you can experience loss and sudden change, uncertainty and anxiety.
Of course, disasters don’t send notices about when they’ll come crashing through your life,but being emotionally prepared can help you through difficult times, recover from trauma morequickly and with fewer long-term side effects.
Here are some tips for emotional wellness:
•;Stop;or;decrease;unhealthy;coping;behaviours;such;as;smoking,;drinking;alcohol;and;eatingtoo little or too much.
•;Make;quiet;time;for;yourself;to;read,;listen;to;music;or;relax.;Even;a;quick;break;can;give;youmental energy to cope.
Source: Alberta Health Services, Preparing Emotionally For Disasters