Adolescents
and
T
rauma 

Adolescents exposed to trauma such as violence, death, accidents, or disasters are likely to show signs of stress.  Adolescents are likely to exhibit some of the following symptoms.  If symptoms do not decrease in severity after a few weeks you are encouraged to seek professional assistance.    

COMMON ADOLESCENT REACTIONS
* Nightmares and night terror      * Suppression of emotion 
* Nervous behavior * Anger or rage
* Worry over the safety of loved ones * Risk-taking behavior
* Confusion * Substance use
* Irritability * Talk of retaliation (getting even)
* Physical complaints * Changes in peer group
* Changes is eating or sleeping habits * Focus on death
* Withdrawal and isolation * Loss of interest in favorite activities
* Poor concentration * Increased sense of alienation
WARNING SIGNS: WHEN TO SEEK PROFESSIONAL HELP
* Any substance use or abuse * Ongoing wish to join the dead person
* Extended periods of depression * Withdrawal from friends
* Ongoing loss of interest in daily activities * Refusal to attend school or major events
* Excessive imitating of the dead person * Dramatic change in eating or sleeping habits
* Statements about or acts of self harm * Violent or threatening behavior
PARENTS AND CAREGIVERS CAN HELP
* Provide assurance that he/she is protected * Be available and encourage questions
* Watch for and correct his/her self-blame * Offer support as they interpret the events
* Develop and/or review safety plans * Be direct and give honest information
* Acknowledge normal feelings * Be tolerant of symptoms of stress
* Help identify, label and express feelings

FOR HELP IN CT CALL:  
Your physician, mental health center or local hospital
For referrals you can call Infoline at 211  

Information provided by: The CT Clearinghouse