Common Reactions in the Aftermath of
Our National Tragedy

At the request of inquiries from our community we have listed some common reactions to this event. It is intended for those individuals not personally experiencing the loss of a loved one. *

Physical

Cognitive

Nausea Confusion
Upset stomach Lowered attention span
Tremors (lip, hands) Calculation difficulties
Profuse sweating Memory problems
Chills Poor concentration
Diarrhea Flashbacks
Tachycardia Nightmares
Muscle Aches Blaming others
Sleep disturbance Illogical thinking
Dry mouth
Shakes
Vision problems
Fatigue
       
Emotional Behavioral
Anticipatory anxiety Withdrawal
Denial Suspiciousness
Fear Increased/Decreased appetite
Depression Excessive humor
Grief Excessive silence
Hopelessness Increased alcohol use
Abandonment Increased smoking
Numbness Changes in interpersonal style
Anger Hypervigilance
Guilt

 

*This list is not intended for the acutely bereaved. We must all support them as their reactions are understandably intensely devastating.

Recommendations for Your Health and Safety

It is important to recognize the uniqueness of this tragedy and to engage in activities that nurture one's self both physically and emotionally. Because so many people are experiencing these reactions simultaneously, it is particularly important to do the following:

1. Be extra cautious when driving or operating heavy equipment.

2. Keep to a normal routine as best as possible. This will minimize feelings of anxiety.

3. Give one's self extra care with physical health. This includes food, rest, exercise and sleep.

4. Share feelings with others.

5. Help support the acutely bereaved and find ways to assist in the volunteer efforts.

6. Seek counseling if your reactions are prolonged.