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Psychic Wounds Last for Those Touched by 9/11
Date:9/8/2011

ents mentally, or scrupulously avoiding all reminders -- is probably not the norm for survivors, family members or first responders, said Karla Vermeulen, deputy director of the Institute for Disaster Mental Health at the State University of New York at New Paltz.

But for those who are, Vermeulen's advice would be to seek counseling and avoid overexposure to media images of the attacks or their aftermath.

"It can have a cumulative effect no one's really aware of," she said. "Be aware of that and limit exposure, and especially with kids."

Winuk plans to visit Ground Zero on Sept. 11, as he has every year since 2001, along with helping to stage service events in 24 cities in partnership with the HandsOn Network. His approach to the anniversary, both personal and public, is the right mix for his own health, he feels.

"I feel good about working on this because it's a forward-looking observance," Winuk said. "I feel that if even one person is helped as a result of Glenn's actions, that makes me feel good, as someone who has lost someone in this way."

More information

Learn more about dealing with psychological trauma at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

To read HealthDay's story on the lasting health problems of 9/11 first responders, click here.

SOURCES: John Feal, founder and president, FealGood Foundation; Jeffrey Jay, Ph.D., psychologist, private practice, Washington, D.C.; Jay Winuk, co-founder, MyGoodDeed.org; Billie A. Pivnick, Ph.D., consulting psychologist to Thinc Design partnered with the National September 11 Memorial and Museum; Karla Vermeulen, Ph.D., deputy director, Institute for Disaster Mental Health, State University of New York at New Paltz; Jan. 7, 2010, American Journal of Epidemiology
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