Therapist: It Will Take Time For Mattoon Community To Process Emotions After School Shooting


The Mattoon community is recovering from a shooting at the high school Wednesday that left one student injured and another in custody. Meanwhile, a licensed therapist says it may take a long time for people to process their emotions.

Speaking on the Illinois Public Media daily talk show The 21st, therapist Karen Simms says between 15 and 20 percent of people who experience a shooting incident develop Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

"That’s a pretty significant impact and those signs can happen up to four years after the incident," Simms said.

While counselors and clergy provide much needed help for students and staff immediately after a shooting, Simms recommends adults watch children carefully for signs of PTSD that could present will after the indcident.

While the focus now is on helping children in Mattoon process their emotions, Simms warned adults to make sure they are getting any counseling they need. She added parents, teachers and administrators need to watch out for each other.

Story source: WILL