Psychologist: High-Profile Cases Can Cause Trauma
Another day of testimony took place Monday in the Kim Potter trial as the medical examiner took the stand and walked the jury through Daunte Wright’s autopsy report. Mental health experts say graphic details of high-profile trials can often trigger anxiety and depression.
“There’s a lot of vicarious traumas that can happen. Vicarious trauma is just this traumatization that can occur from not being there on your own but hearing the details or seeing images that can traumatize people,” said Dr. Talee Vang, a behavioral health psychologist with Hennepin Healthcare.
Dr. Vang says people of color viewing the proceedings often experience racial trauma. She says racial trauma can put communities of color on edge.
“When people of color see this or hear about it, it creates a heightened level of stress or hyper-awareness of their surroundings,” Dr. Vang explained.
Some of the initial symptoms of anxiety and stress include lower energy, racing heartbeat and muscle tension.
“You might notice you have tension that you’re holding in your shoulder, in your face, in your leg even,” Vang said.
Vang says the long-term impact of racial trauma can lead to increased depression, anxiety and other health problems. She recommends people practice self-care and know their limits.
“If you’ve been keeping up with this trial and you’re going into work, but you know this is impacting you, knowing where your energy is at, and knowing exactly what you have to speak upon and what you can let go for that day,” she explained.