Everyone knows that car accidents can result in serious bodily harm. When two motor vehicles collide, the delicate bodies of any occupants are very vulnerable to a wide variety of injuries. From head trauma to fractures to burns, many injuries from car accidents can completely change the lives of victims for a period of time or even permanently.
Of course, it is highly important to tend to any possible physical injuries as soon as possible after an accident. Doctors may perform tests such as X-rays, MRIs, CT scans, and more to identify any physical injuries so that proper treatment can be prescribed. In the weeks and months following an accident, emphasis will likely be on a person’s recovery from their physical injuries and, therefore, any emotional effects of the accident may be overlooked. Unfortunately, emotional injuries can have just as serious of an effect on a car accident victim as physical injuries and the effects may last longer if not treated.
The following is some information about emotional injuries that can develop after a car accident. If you notice any signs and symptoms of emotional conditions after a collision, you should not hesitate to discuss them with your doctor and seek proper treatment.
Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
We most often hear about post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)1 in the context of veterans returning from war zones. However, PTSD can develop after any type of major trauma that involves actual harm or the threat of harm and serious car crashes can certainly be highly traumatic in this manner. In fact, research has indicated2 that about nine percent (9%) of car accident victims develop this disorder.
Symptoms of PTSD can be intense and serious. Some of these symptoms can include:
- Sudden realistic flashbacks to the crash that can cause intense distress
- Experiencing “blackouts” when you remember the crash
- Disturbing nightmares regarding the crash
- Inability to sleep regularly
- Fear of anything that may trigger a flashback
- Outbursts of uncontrollable and irrational anger
- Irrational fears of harmless circumstances
- Being constantly “on edge” or easily frightened
- Lost memory of the crash
- Feelings of guilt or self-blame about the accident
- Depression and anxiety stemming from the crash
PTSD symptoms can affect many aspects of your life and can even be debilitating in certain situations. Due to many symptoms, some PTSD sufferers have difficulty working or participating in their usual activities. Victims may be too afraid to ride in a car, which can significantly affect their ability to get from place to place. In order to address PTSD and the difficulties caused by the disorder, victims often require specialized psychological treatment and often medications.
Emotional Effects of Physical Injuries
Even if you do not have PTSD, severe physical injuries can have serious emotional effects that can require psychological treatment. Some examples are as follows:
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) – If head trauma damages the area of the brain that is responsible for emotional control, a TBI victim can experience serious emotional effects of the injury. Anger, irritability, depression, anxiety, and severe mood swings can all result from certain TBIs.
Effects of physical pain – Experiencing lasting physical pain can take a toll on an injury victim. Victims can not only experience fatigue, but also depression and other emotional struggles due to the constant pain they feel.
Depression due to impairments – Many car accident injuries can result in long-lasting or permanent impairments or disabilities. Such impairments can prevent you from working or engaging in activities you once loved. These impairments and loss of enjoyment of life can easily lead to frustration, boredom, and eventually to depression.
Call Our Experienced Clearwater Auto Accident Lawyers for Help
If you have suffered physical and/or emotional injuries from a traffic crash, you should not hesitate to call our Clearwater car accident attorneys at Dolman Law Group for help today. We have witnessed firsthand how devastating emotional injuries can be and we also know they can be difficult to prove in a legal claim. We are committed to making sure you receive the proper compensation for ALL of your injuries, whether they are physical, mental, or emotional. Our team has the resources and skill to prove the emotional effects of your injuries so you receive the full amount you deserve from any negligent parties. Please call for a free consultation at (727) 853-6275 today or use our online contact form.
Dolman Law Group
5435 Main Street
New Port Richey, FL 34652