September 11th was, in many ways, a moment like any before in the history of the U.S. Because of this, there were many issues that were not understood in terms of dealing with the tragedy. Many Americans, those in New York and Washington, D.C. primary among them, experienced post traumatic stress disorder symptoms in the weeks, months and even years following the event.
Then, just last year, our country experienced another great tragedy: Hurrican Katrina. Again, the devastation was on such a level that many were unprepared for its effects. The mental health ramifications are just now making themselves understood in regards to this monstrous storm, and here again, PTSD is suspect number one.
We have talked before about PTSD here at Anxiety, Addiction and Depression, specifically here and here, but this week we had the distinct pleasure of sitting down with an expert in the field of post traumatic stress disorder. Dr. Claude Chemtob, a clinical psychologist, is a member of the Department of Psychiatry at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City. His particular area of interest is in the impact of trauma in instances of terrorism and disaster on children and families.
In the following video interview, Dr. Chemtob discusses the intricacies of diagnosing and treating post traumatic stress disorder in children. As he addresses the events that continue to weigh on the public consciousness, Dr. Chemtob identifies things to watch out for as well as areas where we can continue to improve in our future responses to traumatic events.
For more information you can visit Mount Sinai Department of Psychiatry, The WTC Family Center, SAMHSA's Disaster Relief page or Mount Sinai's Traumatic Stress Studies Division.