How a Traumatic Car Accident can Affect your Mental Health
After a car accident, it’s easy to focus solely on the physical injuries. Whiplash, head injuries, and broken bones all require immediate attention. This often means that when it comes to winning compensation, you probably think about using that money to cover hospital costs, doctor’s appointments, and lost wages from missed work.
With so many physical consequences to deal with, it’s easy to forget about the mental toll a traumatic car accident can take. However, your mental health is just as important as your physical health, and a car accident can have negative consequences on both of them.
An attorney specialize in car accident cases and can help you win compensation. They can also help deal not with the physical costs and the mental and emotional costs of your traumatic accident. Here are some of the consequences of a car accident on your mental health:
After a car accident, it makes sense that you feel anxious about getting back into the driver’s seat—especially if the accident wasn’t your fault. You might start to feel like nothing is in your control, including your own safety when you’re behind the wheel of a car. You might not feel up to driving, and even the act of letting someone else drive you around can cause intense anxiety.
Like anxiety, emotional distress causes you to feel like nothing is within your control. You might feel constantly on edge, depressed, or worried that something terrible is going to happen. Other symptoms of ongoing emotional distress include:
- Interruptions to your typical sleeping pattern
- Sudden weight loss or gain
- Chronic exhaustion, tiredness, or lack of interest in surroundings
- Obsessive behavior or acting on compulsions
- Decreased interest in socialism
- Difficulty remembering past events
- Mood swings
If you notice any of these symptoms, you should see a doctor or a mental health professional immediately.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
Many people believe post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) occurs only in people who have been placed in incredibly high-stress situations, such as war veterans. However, PTSD can happen to anyone who experiences a traumatic situation, and traumatic car accidents certainly qualify. If you have PTSD, you might experience the following symptoms:
- Disorienting flashbacks that force you to relive the traumatic incident
- Nightmares and insomnia
- Avoidance of situations and areas that remind you of the trauma, such as a car or the site of the accident
- Constantly feeling anxious and on edge
- Increased irritability and depression
If these symptoms persist for longer than three months, you might have PTSD related to your traumatic accident.
Do these symptoms mirror your post-accident experience? If so, you deserve compensation for your mental anguish and suffering. Along with contacting your doctor and mental health professional, contact a lawyer who specializes in car accidents to help you win compensation. You deserve proper treatment for all of your injuries—both physical and mental.