Gender Differences in Psychological Reactions to Hurricane Sandy Among New York Metropolitan Area Residents

Yaira Hamama-Raz, Yuval Palgi, Amit Shrira, Robin Goodwin, Krzysztof Kaniasty, Menachem Ben-Ezra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations

Abstract

Hurricane Sandy was a natural disaster of large proportions—a category 3 storm at its peak intensity that struck New York Metropolitan Area on October, 2012. The death and destruction caused by a hurricane can rise numerous of mental health vulnerabilities such as, acute stress disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, depression, and anxiety. Gender has been identified as one critical variable that can impact vulnerability to adverse effects of trauma, as well as how these reactions are managed. The present research provides an evaluation of gender differences regarding posttraumatic stress symptoms, recollections of national disasters and fears of future negative life events. It also aims to explore information seeking and sources of assistance that were utilized during Hurricane Sandy. An online survey sample of 1,000 people from New York Metropolitan Area completed a battery of self-report questionnaires four weeks after the storm. Results revealed that recollections of national disaster and fear of future events were found to be significantly different among women compared to men. Additionally, women were more inclined toward information seeking through Facebook than men, although no gender differences emerged when examining sources of support. The results indicate that disaster practitioners should tailor gender sensitive interventions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)285-296
Number of pages12
JournalPsychiatric Quarterly
Volume86
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014, Springer Science+Business Media New York.

Keywords

  • Gender differences
  • Hurricane
  • Information seeking
  • Posttraumatic stress symptoms

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