World Trauma Day – October 17, 2022

World Trauma Day is observed on October 17 each year with an emphasis on saving lives and how to properly attend to emergency cases. The day is structured to create increased awareness about trauma and to educate the public on ways to address traumatic incidents and deaths. Did you know that traumatic injuries have caused more deaths to people below the age of 45 than malaria, HIV/AIDS, and tuberculosis? Furthermore, over 9% of deaths around the world are caused by traumatic injuries! World Trauma Day observations seek to lower these rates.

History of World Trauma Day

World Trauma Day was created in New Delhi, India, in 2011. This was a result of the high number of deaths caused by road accidents in the country — an estimate of over 400 people lost their lives each day to it. The day was created to reduce injuries and deaths, as well as the after-effects of trauma incidents in the country and the world at large.

Road accidents are considered to be one of the most common causes of traumatic experiences around the world. Traumatic experiences from military operations, domestic abuse, and sexual assaults follow shortly behind. These experiences, if not handled properly, can result in victims suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (P.T.S.D.). According to accounts dating back to the 5th century, B.C. trauma was visible in Ancient Greece and was also reported among soldiers during the American Civil War in the 1860s.

World War II came with developments on how trauma was conceived by many. Soldiers were then allowed to take a break from the war to clear off their heads and then return to wars later on. During the Vietnam and Korean wars, the use of talk therapy for trauma victims began to hold ground. The then-Veterans Administration, which is now known as the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, started a group therapy program for P.T.S.D. victims. The commemoration of World Trauma Day, on the other hand, guarantees that people are well-informed about how to cope with trauma and avoid it when possible.

World Trauma Day timeline

5 B.C.
The Earliest Trauma Occurrence

Herodotus tells of a Spartan commander who excuses soldiers that are "...out of heart…" to partake in wars despite their proven bravery.

1666
An Early P.T.S.D. Observation in London

Londoners become anxious and sleepless after surviving the great fire of London.

1979
A Bill for Reaching Out to Veterans

The bill for creating outreach centers for Vietnam veterans with P.T.S.D. is passed into law in America.

1910s
British Soldiers are Executed for Cowardice

Over 300 British soldiers suffering from shock are executed for cowardice.

2011
World Trauma Day is Observed

The observation of World Trauma Day begins in India as a way to raise awareness and curtail the incidence of frequent car accidents in the country.

World Trauma Day FAQs

Can parents cause trauma?

They certainly can. Domestic violence trauma affects not just the victim, but also the children who witness it.

What are the signs of trauma?

Trauma is a mental and psychological condition that is experienced by victims of traumatic experiences. Shock may be experienced by traumatized people at first, followed by denial and disbelief. They may also have trouble concentrating on tasks. Some people may become needlessly furious, and experience mood swings, worry, and anxiety as a result of traumatic events. Some people may even retreat altogether from society.

What does trauma do to a person?

Among other things, a traumatized person can develop disorders such as P.T.S.D. Aside from that, a traumatized individual is at high risk of becoming addicted to drugs or alcohol, as he/she resorts to taking them to forget the traumatic experience.

How to Observe World Trauma Day

  1. Enlighten the public on traumatic incidents

    World Trauma Day can be commemorated by educating the public about the causes and effects of traumatic events. This will enable people to become aware of any trauma they are experiencing and seek assistance.

  2. Speak to a traumatized person

    Engage in a conversion with a friend, relative, or stranger who is traumatized. Be empathetic and kind towards them. Sharing their traumatic experience with you will relieve them of some of the weight on their shoulders and help them feel better.

  3. Advocate for better road conditions

    Since road accidents are a leading cause of trauma, push for better road conditions. Additionally, encourage proper road usage.

5 Facts About P.T.S.D. That You Need To Know

  1. Eight in a hundred people will have it

    Approximately eight out of every 100 people are bound to experience P.T.S.D. at some point in their lives.

  2. Prevalent in women

    Women have higher chances of experiencing P.T.S.D. as compared to men.

  3. Flashbacks are not absolute markers

    As opposed to popular beliefs, not every P.T.S.D. victim experiences flashbacks.

  4. Physical love alleviates it

    Showing face-to-face support to P.T.S.D. victims helps them feel better than sending love from far away.

  5. Repeated trauma incidents prolong P.T.S.D.

    The duration of having P.T.S.D. is relative to the number of times a victim is exposed to a particularly traumatic incident.

Why World Trauma Day is Important

  1. It is enlightening

    World Trauma Day broadens our understanding of trauma and teaches us how to respond to emergencies. It educates the general public on how to care for traumatized victims on a variety of levels.

  2. It improves care for traumatized patients

    On World Trauma Day, one of the activities is to remind people about the importance of better trauma care. This will allow them to receive better care.

  3. It fosters togetherness

    Parts of the effects of trauma are anxiety and withdrawal. World Trauma Day helps to make trauma victims feel loved and cared.

World Trauma Day dates

YearDateDay
2022October 17Monday
2023October 17Tuesday
2024October 17Thursday
2025October 17Friday
2026October 17Saturday

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