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New Year’s Eve Tornado Victims Many Have Post-Traumatic Stress

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People pass by to survey damage after a possible tornado hit this shopping center and surrounding area of Sunset Hills, Missouri on December 31, 2010. (UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

People pass by to survey damage after a possible tornado hit this shopping center and surrounding area of Sunset Hills, Missouri on December 31, 2010. (UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

CBS St. Louis (con't)

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ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOX) – Almost 5 months after the New Year’s Eve tornado that damaged homes and buildings in south St. Louis County, victims are still living a daily nightmare.

Psychologist Larry Kiel says the devastating tornadoes here in St. Louis, the south, and the most recent in Joplin, Missouri are definitely tough to handle for those who have yet to heal.

“These are called triggers, they’re either something you hear, or see, or feel in someway that can give you an over-the-top type of response either emotionally or behaviorally,” explains Kiel.

He organized a community support session Monday night to help, but there were more experts than victims sitting around the table.

Kiel say side-effects like, “depression, anxiety, fear, and social isolation,” can linger for years, and paralyze people’s day-to-day living. Another sign of post-traumatic stress — reluctance to admit there’s a problem.


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