Whenever a crisis occurs, we tend to rise to the occasion and do what needs to be done to overcome the problems. In Houston, we witnessed countless examples of individuals who went the extra mile to help others during the storm. Since the storm, we have also witnessed the selflessness of our communities as we worked together to help each other recover from the hurricane. It has been almost a year since Hurricane Harvey struck the Texas coast and flooded the city of Houston and surrounding areas. As you ride through the city, it looks like things have gotten back to normal. Stores are open, people are back at work, and routines have been re-established.On the surface, everything is OK.
Unfortunately, for many, looks can be deceiving. Some people are still not back in their homes and some may still be trying to repair their homes from the damage of the floodwaters. Routines may be re-established, but some of the stores that you used to shop at may have moved or they may no longer be in business. Below the surface, things have not yet returned to normal. For many, the prolonged stress of trying to recover from the storm has begun to take a toll. This toll may be financial, physical, spiritual, relational, or emotional.
In fact, many people within our community are feeling overwhelmed by the constant stress and are beginning to experience symptoms that are indicative of PTSD. Ask yourself the following questions:
- Do you feel anxious and overwhelmed when it rains now?
- Do you have distressing and recurrent memories of the hurricane that tend to intrude upon your thoughts?
- Do you still dream about the hurricane or the aftermath, especially when there is a threat of flooding?
- Do you feel emotionally numb since the storm?
- Are you having trouble emotionally connecting with others now?
- Do you feel constantly agitated?
- Are you struggling with feelings of hopelessness or depression as a result of the prolonged stress from the storm?
- Have you lost interest in activities or begun to be more withdrawn from life?
- Are you having trouble sleeping?
- Do you have more angry outbursts since the storm?
- Is it more difficult to concentrate now?
- Have you become hypervigilant about storms or about being away from home when there is a chance of flooding?
- Have you become more negative about your expectations for life?
- Have you become more fearful of losing everything or of things going wrong?
If you answered yes to any of the questions above, you might be experiencing symptoms of PTSD.PTSD can occur whenever we experience an event that is so extreme that it overwhelms our normal abilities to cope. Remember that PTSD can happen to anyone and that there are effective treatments available to help you overcome the stressors that the storm created. If you are emotionally struggling since Hurricane Harvey, please get help. It is important to realize that your emotional recovery is an important part of overcoming the damage that the storm inflicted upon our community. Houston is a resilient community and if we all keep investing in repairing our financial, physical, spiritual, relational, and emotional lives, we will be stronger in the future.
New Dimensions Can Help!
If you or someone you know is experiencing any of the above symptoms or problems, New Dimensions can help. Our team of experienced therapists and psychiatrists can help you overcome these challenges and help you develop the skills you need to thrive. To schedule a complementary assessment or to find out more about our programs, contact us at 1-800-685-9796.
Our affiliate, MHThrive, provides Individual Therapy, Couples and Marriage Counseling, and Family Therapy at our locations in Katy, The Woodlands, and the Clear Lake area of Houston, Texas. We also provide telehealth therapy for anyone who resides within the State of Texas. To schedule an appointment with one of the MHThrive therapists, contact us at 713-477-0333 or visit www.mhthrive.com to learn more.