Mental Trauma After a Car Accident
The psychological effects of a car accident can be just as traumatic or even more traumatic than physical injuries and the mental trauma after a car accident can have a significant impact on your daily life. The Psychological Injury Prevention Act allows victims to seek compensation for their suffering and the associated medical expenses for their psychological injuries.
Unfortunately many victims don’t immediately recognize that they’re suffering from mental trauma after a car accident as they’re more concerned about physical injuries and problems related to the accident, such as damage to vehicles, whiplash and other often serious injuries. Car accidents, however, are a common cause of mental and emotional stress and US Veterans Department researchers have cited motor vehicle accidents as a common cause of traumatic stress and mental trauma.
Mental Trauma in a Car Accident Triggered by Previous Trauma
If a victim has already been affected by another event or has suffered from anxiety, almost any type of car accident can worsen their problems. While any type of accident can cause PTSD, there are some that traumatize those affected more than others. PTSD is also more likely if the person has suffered serious physical injuries and if the victim saw a loved one die in the accident, it can cause a tremendous psychological trauma.
Acute Stress Disorder After a Car Accident
Acute Stress Disorder (ASD) is another type of mental trauma after a car accident, except it manifests in the hours, day and weeks after an accident, before developing into full blown PTSD. Acute Stress Disorder is characterized by the development of anxiety, dissociation, lethargy, and signs of severe depression that occurs within 4 weeks of exposure to an extreme traumatic event such as a serious car accident. It’s widely believed that an individual develops dissociative symptoms as a direct response to mental trauma after a car accident.
What Causes Mental Trauma After a Car Accident
While no one knows exactly what gets people to develop PTSD, chronic pain can be a big factor. According to an academic study, persistent PTSD symptoms in victims of car accidents can be linked to persistent physical disabilities and a lack of pain therapy.
An article on the website of the National Center for PTSD states that most people who survive a serious car accident have no significant mental health problems yet in around 60 percent of people who do seek advice after a car accident, PTSD symptoms are present. With increasing levels of physical injury and the fear of death from the accident, the likelihood of contracting PTSD also increases and is compounded by fears over financial difficulties and the loss of a loved one.
Mental Trauma After a Minor Car Accident
Not all accidents have to be high speed collisions, it is well documented that mental trauma after a minor car accident can cause the same long term debilitating symptoms. Although it’s much more uncommon to experience ASD or PTSD from minor collisions if the victim has a previous history or mental trauma or PTSD even a minor incident may set their recovery back or reawaken previously dormant mental health issues.
Is it Normal to Have Flashbacks After a Car Accident
Yes, one in seven car accident victims experience flashbacks triggered by Acute Stress Disorder or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Do speak to your medical provider and do consider speaking to an Auto Accident Attorney for a free consultation. Because whilst it’s not unusual to have flashback, they may be signs of a more serious underlying condition.
Common Symptoms of Mental Trauma after Car Accidents
1. Intrusive Memories
2. Avoiding Certain People and Places
3. Behavior Changes
4. Problems Sleeping and Concentrating
Treatment of Mental Trauma After a Car Crash
The treatment of mental trauma after a car accident is based on the symptoms and severity of each case, as determined by a physician or behavioral specialist. Unfortunately, PTSD can not usually be completely cured, but it can become manageable.
The use of alternative means of transport is in many cases an effective means of reducing anxiety. It is no shame to seek professional help to overcome the trauma of your accident. If you find that the symptoms of mental pain are getting worse, or if friends and family members express concerns about you, contact a psychologist to treat the psychological trauma associated with your accident.
Compensation for Mental Trauma After a Car Accident
If you have had a car accident, dealing with mental trauma is only part of the process. You may also need legal assistance in handling your claims for personal injury, including the psychological trauma you have suffered as a result of your accident. One of our experienced attorneys will help you understand your rights and determine what compensation is appropriate for you.
In the event that you have suffered physical or mental injury in a car accident caused by another party, you may be able to claim compensation for a car accident. The claim for injury is quite straightforward, as there are visible signs yet for mental trauma the signs and damage are far less evident. You should be compensated for the pain and suffering that you have caused and to have the best chance of succeeding, you need to document your daily emotional issues, medical expenses, transportation costs, loss of earnings due to lost time, and other expenses.
*Acute Stress Disorder Reference
Bressert, S. (2018). Acute Stress Disorder Symptoms. Psych Central.https://psychcentral.com/disorders/acute-stress-disorder-symptoms/