Health and wellbeing
Disasters can affect both your physical and mental health.
Even if you have escaped immediate danger, your health or life can still be at risk in the mid- to long-term from secondary hazards. Secondary hazards from a disaster might include contaminated floodwater and drinking water, food spoilage, mould growth and venomous or disease-spreading animals. These hazards can lead to skin infections, food poisoning, asthma and vector borne diseases such as dengue fever and malaria.
Where to get help
For immediate medical assistance in an emergency always call Triple Zero (000) and ask for the ambulance.
Speak to your doctor about any issues or concerns that you have as soon as possible. Your doctor will be able to help and can make referrals to specialist services.
For information on health issues and support services visit:
- SA Health
- Healthdirect - or phone the 24/7 hotline on 1800 022 222
- Domestic violence and sexual assault.
Most people will suffer stress and grief after living through a traumatic event such as an emergency or disaster. Often the emotional impacts are relatively mild and reduce over the initial days and weeks with the support of family and friends and others in the community. However, some people may need additional support to help them cope.
If you feel a person's safety is at immediate risk, call Triple Zero (000).
For mental health emergencies, phone the 24/7 Mental Health Triage Service 13 14 65.
See SA Health's Mental health recovery information after a disaster for information on:
- what to look out for
- ways of looking after yourself and others
- what support services are available.
On this site
Community Trauma Toolkit for parents to help children cope with disasters - Emerging Minds
SA Health has information on emotional recovery in some languages other than English. Visit the Department of Human Services website to view these translations.