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June 19, 2014 06:00 PM

Overcoming Stress After The Storm

Between flooding and tornado damage, plenty of people are dealing with stress from storms. One thing the weather-related events have in common — anxiety.

Just imagine being in this situation — your entire home or business destroyed within minutes by mother nature.

"Whether it's that you lose a family member or you lose a house or you lose these treasured possessions, after it's still a major grieving process," Avera Behavioral Health Outpatient Therapist Erik Anderson said.

While some stress is to be expected immediately after disasters like these, Anderson says there are signs that your stress is impacting your health.

"They become to the point where you are not able to sleep, eat or do things that you would say are normal parts of your day," Anderson said.

In order to avoid chronic stress, Anderson says instead of focusing on the enormity of the situation, try to do small things that can improve your life. Also, take care of your health, and stick to a regular routine.

"Self care, eating regularly. Sometimes you may not want to eat after major tragedies, so it's important to try to stick to your daily routine as much as possible," Anderson said.

Friends and family members can also help by offering a helping hand and spending time with their loved ones.

"Being able to listen to them no matter how many times they talk about the same situation, being interested in what they have to say over and over," Anderson said.

If your loved ones don't want to talk, don't force them because after a week of wicked weather, every storm victim will handle stress a little differently.

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