October, November, and December of 2001, a set of questions was added
to the New Jersey Behavioral Risk Factor Survey questionnaire to ascertain
the psychological and emotional impact of the September 11 terrorist attacks
on New Jersey adults. (For a full discussion of the New Jersey Behavioral
Risk Factor Survey and the national Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance
System see http://www.state.nj.us/health/chs/brfss.htm.)
Responses to the questions are presented in detail below. Among the findings
40% of adults reportedly knew someone they identified as a "victim"
of the attacks. Younger adults were more likely than older adults
to have known someone they identified as a "victim", particularly
a friend or coworker.
12% of adults reportedly attended a funeral or memorial service for
someone who was killed in the attacks. Women were more likely than
men to report having attended a service for a particular victim.
half of adults reportedly attended a religious ceremony or community
service for the victims of the attacks. Women were more likely than
men to report having attended a memorial service in general.
one third of employed adults reportedly missed work because of the
attacks. Among employed adults, those aged 18-34 were most likely
to have missed work because of the attacks.
those who missed work, approximately half reported that their workplace
was closed and/or they had no transportation. About one fourth reported
being simply too upset to work.
half of all adults reported feeling angry since the attacks, and about
one fourth reported feeling worried. About 10% reportedly experienced
sleep problems. Feelings of worry, nervousness, and hopelessness were
reported most commonly among younger individuals, particularly women.
Women were also significantly more likely to feel loss of control
only about 11% of those who experienced feelings or problems since
the attacks reported getting help with those problems. About 40% of
these got help from a friend or relative, while only about 20% got
help from a mental health professional or social worker, and only
about 20% got help from a religious counselor or group.
5% of current drinkers reportedly increased their consumption of alcohol
subsequent to the attacks.
one fourth of female smokers reportedly increased their smoking levels,
as opposed to only about 10% of male smokers.
- A small
number of non-smokers reportedly started smoking subsequent to the
Table 1. Were you or anyone
you know a victim of the attacks?
Table 2. Did you attend
any funeral services or memorial services for anyone who was killed
in the attacks?
Table 3. Have you participated
in any religious ceremonies or community memorial services?
Table 4. Did you miss
work for any reason because of the attacks?
Table 5. Since the attacks,
have you experienced any of the following feelings or problems: anger,
nervousness, worry, sleep problems, hopelessness, and/or loss of control?
Table 6. Did you get help
with problems you have experienced since the attacks?
Table 7. Since the attacks,
if you drink, have you had more alcoholic beverages to drink than usual?
Table 8. Have you smoked
more cigarettes since the attacks?
Table 9. Have you started
smoking cigarettes since the attacks?
For further discussion of these data, and additional findings pertaining
to New York and Connecticut residents, please see Psychological
and Emotional Effects of the September 11 Attacks on the World Trade
Center --- Connecticut, New Jersey, and New York, 2001 published
in the September 6, 2002 issue of CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly