In view of the devastation of hurricane Katrina, we are again facing a national disaster. Those who are not primarily affected by the destruction and havoc the storm has brought may feel empathetic, but somewhat powerless. In order to reduce one's feeling of being powerless you can offer some assistance to the victims of the hurricane. One can donate time, energy, financial support, or materials when appropriate. If you give money, or items, make sure that the organization or agency you donate to is legitimate. You can obtain lists of legitimate agencies in you local newspaper or from other mainstream media sources.
If someone you know is directly affected by the results of Katrina I found resources that may be helpful and provide correct information. The following web sites contain information what can prove to be helpful:
For information emotional reactions to traumatic stress see the American Psychological Association's website- www.apahelpcenter.org/articles/article.php?id=107
If symptoms persist for an extended period of time or they return unexpectedly, we would diagnose that as a disorder called Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). For more detailed information on this diagnosable disorder see the National Institute of Mental Health's Website - (www.nimh.nih.gov/healthinformation/ptsdmenu.cfm).
A good source of information regarding the emotional reactions of school age children, and how teachers and parents can help can be found the National Association of School Psychologists Website - (www.nasponline.org/neat/trauma.html).
A good site for professionals seeking information on symptoms, treatments, training programs and handouts for patients is Dr. David Baldwin's Trauma Website- (www.trauma-pages.com).