Bereavement Support Services
Before grieving can be labeled normal, disturbed or distorted, there must be an understanding of what the loss means to the bereaved and how their thoughts, feelings and actions attempt to cope with or avoid that loss.10
The distinction between the normal range of grief reactions and extreme reactions should always be made by a health care professional. Sometimes, family members may experience extreme reactions to their grief, called complicated grief. Screening and treatment for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) may be needed for parents and children who have experienced a sudden death because they are at higher risk of traumatic stress and complicated grief.11
Referrals for mental health services might be necessary if a family member:
A single or occasional occurrence of most of these situations is usually not a cause for great concern. However, if repeated over a period of weeks or months, these reactions may indicate that a family member is experiencing complicated grief and might best be served by a medical or counseling professional.