Background The present study examined whether recollections of the World Trade Center (WTC) terror attack and previous hurricanes moderated the relationship between exposure to Hurricane Sandy and related posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms. Methods An online sample of 1000 participants from affected areas completed self-report questionnaires a month after Hurricane Sandy hit the East Coast of the United States. Participants reported their exposure to Hurricane Sandy, their PTSD symptoms, and recollections of the WTC terror attack and previous hurricanes elicited due to Hurricane Sandy. Results Exposure to Hurricane Sandy was related to PTSD symptoms among those with high level of recollections of the WTC terror attack and past hurricanes, but not among those with low level of recollections. Conclusions The aftermath of exposure to Hurricane Sandy is related not only to exposure, but also to its interaction with recollections of past traumas these findings have theoretical and practical implications for practitioners and health policy makers in evaluating and interpreting the impact of past memories on future natural disasters. This may help in intervention plans of social and psychological services.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Funding/support: This work was supported by internal researcher grant of the research authority at Ariel University (No. 803590).
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Psychology
- Psychiatry and Mental health