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The students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida have since returned to regular schooling after the Valentine’s Day attack on their campus to which 17 students and faculty were victim. Going to school at MSD will be anything but regular or normal for its student body, faculty, and staff. Many students, as well as staff, return to campus with a new component in their lives: therapy. Though many may have already been in active therapy, it is likely that many more are seeking it now. Coping with a school shooting is a challenging for anyone- those directly involved, those indirectly involved, and those who are third party.

As a Florida based treatment center providing residential care for trauma and related issues, we at The Guest House Ocala have felt the effects of this tragedy on a personal level. We have opened our phone lines to anyone in need of support while we all try and process this unspeakable tragedy. Everyone processes and handles information of a tragedy like this differently. Whether it has happened in your home state, your home county, your home town, your school, or the school of someone else- a tragedy like this can impact you. If you have trauma in your life which is unresolved and has gone untreated, this current traumatic tragedy could trigger responses you are not prepared to handle. Trauma lives in the mind and the body, connected by the nervous system. When trauma is activated or triggered, you can experience any number of symptoms, some mild, some severe. Should you, a member of your family, or a friend have a more difficult time than seemingly “normal” handling their emotions regarding the Parkland shooting, there is likely an underlying issue which needs to be addressed therapeutically.

Symptoms to look out for:

Psychosomatic symptoms like: stomach aches, headaches, not feeling well, avoiding going to school or staying at school by claiming to be sick, and moreSymptoms of depression like: losing interest in passions, hobbies, or favorite activities; lack of motivation for going to school or being with friends; ruminating thoughts on death, loss, grief, or violenceSymptoms of anxiety like: excessive worry, fears spinning out of control, anxiety and/or panic attacks, having irrational fears about safety and survivalObsessive thinking about themes like: lack of control, chaos, and fear

How to contact a therapist:

Look to your insurance for information on your behavioral health care coverage, therapists in network, or therapists who are recommendedAsk friends and family for recommendations based on age of the person in needMake a phone call for an initial assessment, provide details of the struggles, and make an appointment as soon as possible

Call The Guest House Ocala today for information on our residential treatment programs for traumas, addictions, and related mental health issues: 1-855-483-7800