Stress, anxiety, and other depression-like symptoms are common
reactions after any natural or human-caused disaster. A disaster
or tragedy is unexpected and often brings out strong emotions.
The toll-free Disaster Distress Helpline can provide immediate
counseling to anyone who needs help in dealing with the violent
storms that swept across Oklahoma.
This free, confidential, and multilingual crisis support service
is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and is also available
via SMS—text “TalkWithUs” to 66746. Callers and texters are
connected to trained and caring professionals who provide
confidential counseling, referrals to the closest crisis centers,
and other needed support services.
In the aftermath of the devastating tornado in Oklahoma, people
will need mental health support as much as medical support.
It’s crucial to help medical professionals, first responders,
family members, and victims both administer or receive the proper
psychological first aid.
This mental health awareness toolkit provides first
responders—whether they are disaster response workers, parents,
caregivers, or teachers—with specific tips for responding
effectively to people in the wake of a disaster.
The information is meant to help alleviate painful emotions and
promote hope and healing.