September 11th is a traumatic date – what do you recommend to manage the stress?

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John H. Krystal, M.D.

It is true that we seem to be bombarded with news related to disasters and social upheaval from around the world. What is remarkable is the capacity of most people to be resilient to the impact of this bad news most of the time. People with a history of problems related to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression or other psychiatric disorders may be more sensitive to the bad news, particularly when they are feeling poorly. The most commonly used strategy at these difficult times is to get together with friends and family members to take advantage of the opportunities that we have to support each other. When the usual sources of support do not seem adequate, counseling or therapy can be helpful. Sometimes, significant worsening of symptoms in the context of PTSD, depression or other illnesses is a sign that medication treatments for these problems are not adequately effective. In this context, it can be helpful to meet with your therapist, doctor or psychiatrist to evaluate the need for medication treatments or changes in these medications to better control these symptoms.

John H. Krystal, M.D.
Scientific Council Member
Chair, Department of Psychiatry, Yale University