Fairfax Media Network

Weather News

Parents warned to spot flood trauma signs

By Frances Adcock, Wednesday March 13, 2013 - 12:15 EDT

Mental health specialists say parents should seek help if their children are showing signs of trauma after the recent Bundaberg floods.

Dr Vanessa Cobham, from the Australian Psychological Society, says young children are the most at risk after natural disasters.

She says parents should consult a GP if symptoms last longer than a few weeks.

"One thing that you might see in kids that you don't see in adults after something very bad happens is developmental regression, which means acting younger," Dr Cobham said.

"For example, if you have an eight year old who has been toilet trained for many years and after the floods they have begun wetting the bed. If it doesn't resolve within those few weeks then it is a good idea to go and see the GP."

Dr Cobham says trauma is normal after natural disasters and affected residents will usually recover without seeking specialist help.

However, she says it may take more time for some residents to get back on track.

"The majority of people will be fine and any distress they're experiencing now will resolve naturally over time," she said.

"Whether they be an SES [State Emergency Service] worker or someone whose business has been inundated or a child whose family home has been completely maxed - for most people these symptoms will reduce."


- ABC

© ABC 2013

More breaking news

ABC News
Sydney Morning Herald
National Nine News
News Limited

Display Your Local Weather

Weather News

Snow season high becoming a low point

16:18 EST

The 2016 snow season has reached a new peak depth this week according to measurements taken today.

Late winter soaking causes flooding

16:13 EST

Rain gauges as far north as the Gulf of Carpentaria and south to Ulladulla have received decent rainfall in the last 24 hours, some of which caused dangerous flooding.

NSW weather: Bystanders 'watched helplessly' as 72yo man swept away by floodwaters

12:58 EST

A friend of a man feared drowned in floodwaters near Kyogle has told of "helplessly watching" the 72-year-old as he clung to a tree before being swept downstream.