For those who have walked away from a near death experience, the emotional and psychological impact can last long after the physical trauma has healed. Researchers have studied the emotional and psychological impact of being involved in a plane crash for decades. What they found is that survivors experience the memories and process the event in many different ways. The fallout from the crash leaves many survivors feeling as shattered and broken as the plane they were in. Searching for mental health facilities in Charlotte, NC in 2018? Call Legacy and ask about our outpatient options.
The Importance of Memory
Crash survivors who had less control over their memories and processing of emotions during the crash were more likely to develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) than those crash survivors who were able to recall the incident more factually. Researchers used the 2001 crash of Air Transat Flight 236 for the study which concluded that talking to survivors about what happened during the crash in an environment where they feel safe and discussing what happened factually can help lessen the chances of the survivor developing PTSD.
A Loss of Control
One of the most basic human desires is to be in control of our environment. During a plane crash, the lack of control is part of the traumatic experience for many. New York scientists studied a group of 15 plane crash survivors and found that flight crew members who believed they had control over events that may have caused or led to the crash reported less distress. Passengers who also felt some level of control over how they acted or what they did and said in reaction to the crash also reported less distress.
The trauma of a plane crash is unique. It is unlike a carjacking or a mugging where you may not have time to reflect on your life while the incident is occurring. During a plane crash, the occupants of the airplane are aware of the traumatic event, and they may experience their lives flashing before their eyes and the chance to re-evaluate things at that moment. Survivors of airline crashes are often left with feelings of survivor's guilt, depression, anxiety, and PTSD.
It is interesting to note that those who were directly involved in the crash are not the only ones whose mental health is impacted. The friends and loved ones of the crash victims are also susceptible to PTSD, anxiety, and overall distress. Air traffic controllers who were responsible for these fatal flights may also experience PTSD and depression as a result of the crash.
Not all survivors of airline crashes experience negative mental health impacts. A 1999 study found that those who had been involved in a crash were less likely to display emotional distress than those airline passengers who had not experienced a crash. The study further found that survivors may experience posttraumatic growth. Posttraumatic growth according to the Posttraumatic Research Group at the University is defined as the positive changes experienced as a result of the struggle with a major life crisis or traumatic event. Survivors of a traumatic event who experience posttraumatic growth may experience increased appreciation for life, greater inner strength, a stronger sense of spirituality, discover new possibilities, and deepen relationships.
Affordable Mental Health Facilities in Charlotte, NC
If you, or someone you love, have been involved in a traumatic event and are struggling to cope, Legacy Freedom Charlotte NC can help. Our holistic approach to mental health care has given thousands of clients hope and healing. Begin your journey today by calling or clicking to connect with our care team. What are you waiting for? Start your journey today at one of the best mental health facilities in Charlotte, NC!