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Local nonprofit issues reminder about firework safety around those with PTSD

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Posted at 2:22 PM, Jul 01, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-01 17:22:21-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — The Vegas Strong Resiliency Center (VSRC) has issued a reminder to the Las Vegas community that fireworks can be PTSD triggers for survivors of violent crimes and veterans.

VSRC describes a trauma cue as both external and internal reminders of a traumatic event in someone’s life, something that may reinstate the feelings experienced when the traumatic event happened.

To many individuals, VSRC says, the noises and/or lights from the fireworks can be a trigger for trauma and may reinstate PTSD.

“Everyone experiences trauma cues differently, but we know some may feel the need to reach out for help,” said Tennille Pereira, director of the VSRC. “We are here, as always, to offer support to anyone who needs it.”

The VSRC encourages the community to let surrounding neighbors know about plans to celebrate with fireworks, in case they may need time to prepare. They also offer the following recommendations to help in coping with trauma triggers:

  • Keep alcohol and caffeine to a minimum. External stimuli such as these can cause more issues like panic attacks or anxiety.
  • Reflect on personal triggers. Take a moment to speak out loud with friends and loved ones about your trigger cues and a game plan to address them.
  • Talk it out. Reach out and have a plan in place with people to contact for support and comfort. 
  • Minimize the noise. Earplugs and noise-canceling headphones can keep external noises to a minimum.
  • Practice self-care. Meditation, yoga, journaling, massages or even bubble baths can help redirect the focus to taking care of yourself in stressful or triggering situations.

To help keep our community safe, the Resiliency Center also encourages the community to report any and all usage of illegal, dangerous fireworks to ISpyFireworks.com instead of calling 911.