Disaster Trauma

Press/Media: Expert Comment

Media contributions


Media contributions

  • TitleDisaster Trauma featured on ABC Online, MSN Australia, and MSN Australia and New ZealandNew
    Degree of recognitionNational
    Media name/outletABC Radio
    Media typeRadio
    Duration/Length/Size15 minute radio interview
    DescriptionIt's ok to show self-compassion
    Senior teaching fellow of psychology at Bond University, Cher McGillivray, said natural disasters could completely overwhelm people, but the signs might not be as obvious, especially if they were stressed.

    "They will still go through that anxiety or might sense those trauma triggers, feeling tense, maybe not be sleeping as well, those are the sorts of things we need to be looking out for," she said.

    "The best thing we can do is apply that self-compassion to ourselves, calming strategies to put our focus on to things we can control whilst coping with things we can't."

    She said being in a "constant state of fight or flight" during natural disasters contributed to high anxiety and potential trauma.

    "Help people validate that yes, they are going to be more anxious in this time but let's not live in that fear all the time," Ms McGillivray said.

    "What's still in your control? Try and focus on what [you] can control, not what [you] can't."

    Yet, with the massive physical clean up and recovery only just beginning, addressing mental health first can often be neglected.

    "Facing the devastation of what people are going through, it's really changed the way we see the world," Ms McGillivray said.

    "Catastrophic loss precludes recovery … it will never leave us the same."

    Reaching a total potential audience of 816,093.
    Producer/AuthorJulie Clift
    PersonsCher McGillivray