Fireworks have become commonplace on the 4th of July and throughout the summer. Though to many they symbolize a celebration, to some they can cause elevated anxiety levels and trigger symptoms of PTSD.
CBD & THC can help reduce many of the symptoms of anxiety caused by PTSD – please see last week’s post for more information.
Here are some tips to help manage in these situations (full list available here):
- Prepare items that can provide a positive distraction (i.e. happy photographs, soothing or favorite music, and calming scents like pine, lavender, or cinnamon).
- Cancel out the sound with ear plugs, soothing music, or white noise like ceiling fans or air conditioning.
- Try to center yourself with a 5-4-3-2-1 sensory exercise. Identify:
- 5 things you can see;
- 4 things you can hear;
- 3 things you can feel;
- 2 things you can smell; and
- 1 good thing you are grateful for or can say about yourself.
- Don’t be self-critical, embarrassed or ashamed. Millions of people have these reactions.
Many of these same techniques can help your four-legged friend, including: calming music, white noise, a dab or two of lavender oil on their fur, and CBD.
We aren’t saying people shouldn’t enjoy fireworks – planned celebrations are easier to avoid for people with PTSD. Random personal displays are not – so, be mindful about those around you who may be affected.