How should earthquake survivors be approached at school?

The earthquake, which hit 10 provinces in Kahramanmaraş, caused great sadness throughout Turkey. Specialist clinical psychologist Benan Şahinbaş, who says everyone has feelings of deep sadness, sadness, hopelessness and emptiness, said: “While earthquake victims face post-acute trauma, we try to deal with presumed (collective) trauma. Unfortunately, all of us have mental, physical, and mental symptoms of post-acute trauma, and this situation may persist for some time.”

Psychologist Benan Şahinbaş explained that acute stress disorder is a mental health problem that can occur immediately after a traumatic event and said that it can cause various psychological symptoms; He states that if left unrecognized or cured, it can lead to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Five symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder

Involuntary Repetitions: The inability of the person to continue and stop reliving the traumatic event through flashbacks, memories, or dreams.

negative mood: The person is sad, has negative thoughts, and is in a negative mood.

Dissociative Symptoms: The person’s altered perception of reality, ignorance of what is happening around them, and the inability to remember parts of the traumatic event.

Avoidance Symptoms: Conscious avoidance of thoughts, feelings, people, or places related to the traumatic event.

Signs of Arousal: Sleep disturbances such as insomnia, difficulty concentrating, verbal or physical irritability or aggression. Also, the person may feel nervous or defensive and get startled very easily.

Psychologist Benan Şahinbaş stated that many of these symptoms are the situations experienced by earthquake-affected children and said, “Therefore, the situation is very sensitive for children who are transferred to other provinces. Because they are in fear, anxiety, worry and hopelessness, the new city or school can sometimes be a trigger and sometimes a cure. Therefore, it is imperative that children and teachers receive awareness training on this topic at school. It is important not to ask the earthquake victim about his family, or ask him to explain the situation, or even ask anything about the situation. This will help the child feel more secure over time and establish routines. Both teachers and families should give awareness speeches to their children about the absence of grouping in the classroom, the absence of peer bullying, the fact that these issues are not raised and what the mood of the earthquake-stricken child might be .”

Conversations should be held to support children’s empathy.

Specialized clinical psychologist Benan Şahinbaş, who said that the school’s guidance service should make a separate plan for each earthquake victim and after a while even refer the child to the necessary institutions or organizations for individual trauma therapy, said: “The current trauma symptoms and orientation to his new school and new life.We can’t forget that the process is very, very delicate.Families should definitely explain this sensitive situation to their children at home, give speeches that will enhance the child’s empathy with the other child support, and school teachers should also provide training and seminars to the children in the institution for this situation. We are all going through a sensitive period, some children may not be as aware of the process as adults due to their age. don’t ignore situation Who will heal us all; integrity, empathy, solidarity, love e n collaboration.

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