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Coping with the mental health effects of Mass Shootings

Updated: Apr 11

The shooting at the Kansas City Chiefs' victory parade and rally is a sobering reminder that a mass shooting can happen anywhere, affecting any of us. Following one of these incidents, people may feel shocked, angry, anxious, frustrated, depressed, or numb. Often, after an incident, counseling is provided to victims. However, this is not always the case, depending on the size of the incident and where it took place.

Here are strategies to cope with distress after a shooting:

  • Maintain your daily routine as much as possible--eat, sleep, exercise. Routines provide stability in uncertain times.

  • Limit your exposure to the news. Tune in to stay informed. Take a break if you start to feel angry or depressed.

  • Lean on family and friends for emotional support.

  • If you find yourself struggling with anger, anxiety, issues, or a fear of going to public places, talk to a mental health professional. If you're employed, most businesses provide "Employee Assistance Programs (EAP) for their employees at no cost.

Children may also be affected after learning about a mass shooting. Gun violence is the leading cause of death of kids in the United States, according to the CDC. If you feel your child is capable of coping with the circumstances surrounding the shooting, be honest with them and explain it to them in your terms. This will limit their confusion with conflicting news reports and misguided information they receive from classmates and friends.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding active shootings, please don't hesitate to contact us at

By Nicole Cross/ Texas

Updated 12:46 PM CT Feb. 18th, 2024

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