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Floodwaters can take physical, mental toll on victims

Posted: 5:29 PM, Mar 18, 2019
Updated: 2019-03-19 09:22:48-04
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OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) -- — The number one cause of death during floods is being swept away in the waters, but doctors say there are other dangers.

The University of Nebraska Medical Center says people shouldn't enter standing floodwaters because you don't know if there are chemicals, livestock or human waste, or debris in it that could cause infection or injuries.

Doctor Marley Doyle with UNMC says there's not a right or wrong way to deal with this type of mental stress. For those who are displaced or in a shelter she suggests making sure you get enough sleep, and enough to eat; take care of yourself.

"Try to do whatever you can in your power that you enjoyed before to kind of continue with your routine, continue with your sense of normalcy because those things will give you a sense of control over the situation when otherwise you don't really feel like you have a lot of control," Dr. Doyle explained.

Doctors add that once the waters are gone it's important to clean and dry your home as quickly as possible avoid mold and respiratory issues. Also, don’t use generators inside your home when cleaning because the exhaust could be deadly.

For health resources and a list of Red Cross shelters visit NEMA’s 2019 Flood Information .