As we remember the tragedy of 9/11, a new research study suggests the severity of a traumatic event can influence the mental health of individuals not directly exposed to the incident.Experts evaluated how the attacks impacted the psychological processes of those not directly exposed to the event.
Researchers studied college students in Massachusetts and found that even those who were not directly connected to New York or Washington showed increased stress responses to run-of-the-mill visual images.
“Other studies have shown that the 9/11 attacks resulted in a wave of stress and anxiety across the United States,” said researcher Ivy Tso, a doctoral student in clinical psychology at the University of Michigan.
“Eight to 10 percent of the residents of New York City reported symptoms consistent with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression while 40 percent of Americans across the country experienced significant symptoms of stress related to the attacks.”
Study findings are published in the Journal of Traumatic Stress.
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