World Trauma Day: Practise meditation to de-stress, don’t be afraid to ask for help when coping with crisis – Economic Times

By Dr Kumaraswamy E

The word trauma is associated with any injury caused to the body. The injury is likely to be caused due to various reasons like road accidents, fires, acts of violence, and crimes against the vulnerable population. Road traffic accidents are perhaps the leading cause of trauma across the world.

The purpose of World Trauma Day lies in generating awareness on the importance of adopting various precautionary measures and averting deaths and disabilities caused by accidents or trauma. That said, many injuries may lead to temporary or permanent disability, and some may even cause death. As per reports, “Every year, about 5 million people die from injuries across the world. In India alone, it is estimated that one million people die and 20 million are hospitalized every year due to injuries.” Furthermore, most of the injuries are due to the negligence of preventive and safety measures.

While dealing with the aftermath of a trauma can be challenging, we bring you some guidelines on how to cope up with the crisis:

Hearken on the essential tasks
When handling the repercussions of any crisis, it is essential to pay attention to activities on priority. You can accomplish your routine tasks by sharing your responsibilities with family and friends. Furthermore, put a hold on trivial commitments and pay great attention to what actually can be done. These will help you channelize your physical as well as emotional energy.

Ask for support

While traumatic experiences can put you through some tough situations, it is imperative to talk it out with someone and overcome it with time.iStock

While traumatic experiences can put you through some tough situations, it is imperative to talk it out with someone and overcome it with time.

It can be relieving to talk about your traumatic experience with your loved ones. This will help them in understanding the situation you are in and may extend a helping hand in your routine activities. By doing this, you are likely to feel a little better and less burdened.

It is essential to de-stress yourself. A traumatic experience can drain you emotionally as well as physically. When you face a crisis, it is natural for your body’s stimuli to stress out and get triggered immensely. While staying calm after a traumatic experience is indeed challenging, it is advisable to practice meditation or stress relief techniques to suppress the stress.

Talk it out
In installments, allow yourself to think about the trauma and talk it out with who you feel comfortable. Do not hesitate to talk it out with the fear of crying when you talk. Remember, it’s natural to shed a tear or so while talking about painful experiences.

Regain composure
It is likely for you to feel that negative emotions are a sign of weakness, and you are unable to handle things or situations in the right way. Remember, everything takes time. So be patient with your emotions, feelings, and reactions to situations in life. You may not feel yourself after any mild or severe traumatic experience, and that is normal. Thus, the sooner you accept the reality the better it is.

Seek medical assistance when required
In case where dealing with a crisis becomes challenging and you continue having nightmares, negative feelings and are unable to move with life even after several weeks after a traumatic experience, then you may require professional support to help deal with the situation. You should consult your psychiatrist and seek help to overcome the crisis.

While traumatic experiences can put you through some tough situations, it is imperative to talk it out with someone and overcome it with time. Additionally, if you are still facing difficulties in overcoming traumatic experience, then seek medical assistance immediately.

(The writer is HOD- Emergency Medicine, Fortis Hospital, Bangalore)

Identifying Hidden Factors

Cardiovascular diseases (CVD) are the leading cause of mortality in India. An individual experiencing various lifestyle conditions like diabetes, hypertension, obesity due to physical inactivity, dyslipidemia, or even indulging in smoking can be one of the CVD risk factors.

In 2016, the prevalence of CVDs in India was estimated to be around 55 million. An alarming proportion of these cases remain undiagnosed until they get serious.

While shooting pain in the chest or the left arm are obvious signs that have been pointed out by doctors for years, there are plenty of others symptoms one should watch out for.

On World Heart Day, Dr HP Bharathi, Deputy Chief Medical Officer at Jindal Naturecure Institute lists out the hidden risk factors.

Swollen Feet

Referred Pain

Physical Struggle

Memory Loss

(Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this column are that of the writer. The facts and opinions expressed here do not reflect the views of

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If you notice visible swelling in your feet, it is a serious indication of heart problems. Swelling is a tell-tale sign of reduced circulation. When the blood flows out of your heart at a slower rate, the blood returning to your heart gets backed up. This results in a build-up in the tissues surrounding your legs, ankles, and feet. Pain caused by heart problems can be felt in areas other than just the chest. That is when the pain signals running down your nerves start to overwhelm all the nearby nerves. Most patients experience referred pain at some point before the condition becomes severe. Referred pain due to heart problems are usually felt in the arms shoulders, neck, and jaw. If you are struggling to finish non-strenuous physical tasks, it is the sign of a circulatory problem. You may experience shortness of breath while climbing the stairs or feel the need to rest more often while exercising. If this sounds familiar, it could be an indication that your heart is unable to supply your muscles with oxygen-rich blood. If you notice your thinking of getting muddied and confused, it could be a sign that your brain is not getting enough blood. If the problem is left unaddressed, it can damage your brain cells and lead to serious issues like short term memory loss. Regular episodes are an indication that there is an underlying medical problem that needs serious medical attention.