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Anxiety Stress Coping. 1999;12(4):363-96. doi: 10.1080/10615809908249317.

Stability and change in stress, resources, and psychological distress following natural disaster: Findings from hurricane Andrew.

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a Department of Psychology , Georgia State University, University Plaza , Atlanta , GA , 30303 , USA.


The stress, resource, and symptom levels of 241 residents of southern Dade County, Florida were assessed 6 and 30 months after Hurricane Andrew. Percentages meeting study criteria for depression and PTSD did not change over time. Whereas mean levels of intrusion and arousal decreased, depressive symptoms remained stable, and avoidance/numbing symptoms actually increased. Intrusion and arousal were associated more strongly with pre-disaster factors (gender, ethnicity) and within-disaster factors (injury, property loss) than with post-disaster factors (stress, resources), but the reverse was true for depression and avoidance. Changes over time in symptoms were largely explained by changes over time in stress and resources. The findings indicate that ongoing services are needed to supplement the crisis-oriented assistance typically offered to disaster victims.


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