Community-level resources may affect residents' mental health following a natural disaster

In a study on the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, residents of communities with high unemployment were at elevated risk of disaster-related post-traumatic stress, but only when individuals were assessed 25–28 months post-disaster and not when they were assessed 13–16 months post-disaster.

The results suggest the need for ongoing support to economically disadvantaged communities in which have endured disaster-related stressors.

"Our study demonstrates that we need to remember disaster-affected communities, particularly those with pre-existing socioeconomic vulnerabilities. These communities might continue to need assistance years after the disaster took place," said Dr. Sarah Lowe, lead author of the Journal of Traumatic Stress study.


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More information: Community Unemployment and Disaster-Related Stressors Shape Risk for Posttraumatic Stress in the Longer-Term Aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Journal of Traumatic Stress. DOI: 10.1002/jts.22126
Journal information: Journal of Traumatic Stress

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Citation: Community-level resources may affect residents' mental health following a natural disaster (2016, October 4) retrieved 15 October 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-10-community-level-resources-affect-residents-mental.html
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