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Help after a Natural Disaster

Coping With Floods – Aftermath

Coping with the Aftermath of a Flood

A flood can leave a trail of structural destruction, but what about the emotional impact? The full force of the disaster is often realized after the floodwaters recede and emergency crews go home. In addition to the clean-up efforts, it’s important that you devote time to restoring your own emotional wellness. Feelings of grief, despair and frustration are normal reactions to such events. Other emotions you may be experiencing include:

  • Panic/Feeling out of control
  • Despair
  • Disorientation/Confusion
  • Guilt
  • Shock/Numbness
  • Anger
  • Anxiety/Uncertainty
  • Grief


Coping Tips

  • Following the coping techniques outlined below can help you deal with the range of emotions you are most likely experiencing:
  • Be extra patient. Don’t expect things to instantly restore themselves. Accept that restoration (both physical and emotional) takes time.
  • Realize that you will experience a range of emotions, and moods can change unexpectedly.
  • Don’t overlook the feelings of children as you deal with the situation. They need to feel that they can count on you for extra attention, love and support.
  • Try to keep your family diet as nourishing as possible for needed energy.
  • Focus on the big picture, instead of the little details and little problems. It will give you a sense of competency.
  • Talk with friends, family, counselors or members of the clergy. In crisis situations, a supportive network is essential.
  • Try to get at least seven to eight hours of sleep a night to refresh your mind and body for the next day’s activities.
  • Make a list of things that need to be done and rank them by what needs to be done first, second, third, etc.
  • Learn acceptance. Don’t worry about things you cannot control. Conserve your energies for things you can control.

Adapted from materials provided by North Dakota State University Extension Services


Getting Help

The FAA WorkLife Solutions Program provides many resources and services to help you and your family. To receive further assistance, call your program at 1-800-234-1327, TTY Users: 1-800-456-4006, or log on to www.MagellanHealth.com/Member to begin accessing these free services available today.


This document is for your information only. It is not meant to give medical advice. It should not be used to replace a visit with a provider. Magellan Health Services does not endorse other resources that may be mentioned here.


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