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Seeing your house, your block, your neighborhood and even nearly your whole city go under water would have to have some sort of effect on you right?  Well, come to find out its more than you know.  It’s been 10 years since Hurricane Katrina, where over 80% of New Orleans was under water, but the effects are still there.

In a study published by the journal, Nature, they named Hurricane Katrina, “a natural disaster, but a human catastrophe.” Depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has increased among Gulf Coast residents from 15% to 21%, reflecting the chaos that survivors coped with after loss and trying to meet necessary needs like food, water, housing, and health care.

In a separate study following 392 low-income parents, almost half of them were suffering from PTSD a year after the hurricane. The rate of parents suffering from psychosis, depression, and other serious mental conditions doubled from 7% to 14%.

People who lost loved ones and remained in New Orleans during the hurricane were most likely to be affected by PTSD symptoms, the researchers said.

The scope and duration of this one mental health issue after Katrina shows that long-term, coordinated mental health response must be included in disaster relief, the researchers said.

“The incidence of PTSD in our population post-Katrina reported in this research study is noteworthy and worth following as recovery efforts move forward. The prevalence cited in this study is not alarming to those professionals caring for patients who have been traumatized by the storm and challenged by the recovery efforts,” Dr. Peter DeBlieux, director of emergency services at Louisiana State University in New Orleans, said in a prepared statement.

10 Years After Hurricane Katrina, PTSD Still On The Rise  was originally published on blackdoctor.org

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