Supporting children through disaster
Fire, flood, cyclone – whatever form disaster takes, the distress that often follows for those who survive is well-documented. Even emergency responders, those trained to help others through disaster situations, are not immune from serious trauma in the aftermath. All of which makes it especially sobering when contemplating a disaster’s effects on children. ‘Children are physically and mentally more vulnerable, and are very dependent on the adults and supports around them,’ GP and disaster medicine specialist Dr Penny Burns told newsGP.
‘The future mental and physical health trajectory of babies, toddlers, primary school kids and adolescents can all be affected by disasters.’ Dr Burns believes that while GPs are often the key – sometimes only – medical professionals in assisting children and their families in a disaster situation, they…
The physical toll of workplace bullying is a silent killer
Walking into work on a Monday morning can instil a feeling of apprehension for the week ahead. Picking at our fingernails, watching the clock and worrying we’ll sleep through our alarm is all part of normal “Sunday night fear” as we nervously wait for the week to begin.
The meetings, the deadlines, the ordinary momentum of the working week can stir these regular anxieties as we strive to do our job well.
For some, that edginess of joining colleagues in the morning is terrifying, almost crippling, as a result of bullying. Anxiety, stress, physical illness, depression, all culminates from a culture of fear which lies under the flooring in many organisations…
Why are some people more resilient than others?
I have long believed that resilience is the most important quality we can cultivate.
It is impossible to reach midlife without realising that everyone has their share of pain and trauma. You may have a blessed childhood, you may sail through the early years of your adulthood, but you will not get to the end of your life without some kind of adversity. Happiness is not dependent on a lack of adversity; it is dependent on the ability to manage the inevitable adversity well.
As a Jewish person, I grew up in a community populated by Holocaust survivors and their families. Some survivors were deeply and permanently damaged by the unspeakable horrors they experienced, passing down their trauma to the next generations. Others thrived in their new lives in Australia, and lived with joy and optimism despite their horrendous pasts…