How to Cope With Emotional Trauma After an Accident

Emotional trauma after an accident can have long-term impact on your mental and physical health. Everyone's experience with emotional trauma is unique and the key to returning to normal is to identify the symptoms and when to seek help as well as your legal rights if you suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Physical injuries are the major concern after an accident with the major focus being to get help for those injured. But there’s another type of injury, one often overlooked but can be very devastating and have a negative impact on your day-to-day life. This injury affects your mental health and is often referred to as a psychological or emotional injury.

“Emotional trauma after an accident can have long-term impact on your mental and physical health. Everyone’s experience with emotional trauma is unique and the key to returning to normal is to identify the symptoms and when to seek help as well as your legal rights if you suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD),” says an accident injury attorney at https://www.ilawyerup.com/ law firm.

It’s normal to experience a myriad of emotions after an accident. Depending on the individual, these emotions could range from hopelessness to shock, fear, anxiety, and so on. It’s a normal response to a traumatic experience like an accident. But when these emotions linger, they start to interfere with your day to day life and progress to PTSD.

The American Psychological Association has identified auto accidents as the leading and second leading causes of PTSD in men and women respectively. And this should tell you how traumatic accidents can be. Below are signs of PTSD:

  • Intrusive Memories

People suffering from PTSD often experience intrusive memories of the traumatic events. This usually manifests as unwanted and uncontrolled flashbacks of the traumatic events while some people experienced upsetting dreams and nightmares associated with the traumatic events.

Certain triggers can also set off intrusive memories of the accident. Someone involved in a motorcycle/car accident can start to relive the accident whenever there’s a news report of an accident. If the accident occurred on a rainy day, a gloomy or rainy day might trigger memories of the accident. Knowing the triggers of your PTSD is crucial to successfully treating it.

  • Avoidance

Avoidance is one of the core symptoms required for the diagnosis of PTSD. People suffering from PTSD try to avoid talking or thinking about the trauma and most tend to be successful at first. Eventually, intrusive memories of the traumatic set in and starts to affect everyday life.

Another way people try to avoid their trauma is by avoiding anything that reminds them of it. People involved in an auto accident may avoid any activity of the trauma. This has resulted in people unable or refusing to drive after an accident and depending on the individual, this may have significant negative effects on your personal and professional life.

  • Changes in Physical And Emotional Reactions

Changes in physical and emotional reactions, also called arousal or hyperarousal symptoms, is one of the core symptoms of PTSD. People experiencing arousal/hyperarousal are always in the “fight of flight mode”, always looking out for danger, and becoming easily agitated.

Coping With PTSD

One of the best ways to overcome traumatic events is self-care. Most people tend to neglect self-care after stressful situations and doing this is bound to make things worse. Instead, make conscious and deliberate efforts to take care of yourself. Eat a balanced diet, get enough sleep, and spend time with friends and family. Incorporating exercise into your schedule will also do you a lot of good.

If you are ready to get behind the wheels again, practice safe driving by wearing your seatbelts at all times and reducing distractions to the bare minimum. Don’t drive when you are too tired or under the influence.

If all these don’t work, then it’s time to seek professional help. Your primary health care provider can recommend a mental health counselor as they know how to help clients process trauma. The counselor will evaluate you and advise you on the best ways to manage your trauma. Depending on the severity of your symptoms, you may need medications to manage your anxiety. Meditation therapy like yoga can also ease symptoms of trauma.

Can You Recover Compensation for PTSD From a Car Accident?

You can receive compensation for emotional or psychological distress after an accident. This usually involves providing evidence of how the accident affected your mental health. Evidence of psychological suffering and therapist appointments will go a long way in successfully making your claim. Working with an experienced injury lawyer can also help you get the amount you deserve.

It’s easier to get compensation for emotional distress if you also suffered physical injuries in the accident. In fact, this is a requirement in some States. But regardless of the legislation in your State, you should still have a chat with an experienced injury lawyer for sound legal advice. This way, you know how to proceed with your case.

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