How to Cope with Distress After a Trauma


Senseless acts of violence or terrorism can trigger a variety of emotions, including shock, sorrow, fear, anger, and grief. You may, have problems sleeping, concentrating, or going about simple chores. Because the world seems more dangerous, it may take a while for you to regain your sense of equilibrium.

The following recommendation from the American Psychological Association can help.


Talk about it.


Ask for support from people who will listen to your concerns. It often helps to speak with others who have shared your experience so you do not feel so different or alone.

Strive for balance


Remind yourself of people and events that are meaningful and comforting, even encouraging.

Take a break


While you may want to keep informed, limit your exposure to news on television, the internet, newspapers, or magazines. Schedule breaks to focus on something you enjoy.

Take care of yourself


Engage in healthy behaviors, such as exercise, that will enhance your ability to cope. Avoid alcohol and drug because they can suppress your feelings rather than help you to manage your distress.

Help others or do something productive


Try volunteering at your school or within your community. Helping someone else often helps you feel better too.
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