How Common is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder from a Car Accident?
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a serious disorder that can result from very stressful situations, including motor vehicle accidents. A crash is often a traumatic event that marks a major change in a victim’s life. In many cases, the change includes the development of PTSD.
Researchers believe that up to 39 percent of victims injured in motor vehicle accidents suffer PTSD, according to an article in the British Columbia Medical Journal. About 15 percent of car crash victims still experience PTSD a year after the event, the researchers report.
That’s a huge percentage of injury victims dealing with a serious psychological disorder in addition to physical injuries.
Symptoms of PTSD After a Car Accident
When someone is injured in a car accident, they may have to deal with more than physical injuries. They may be anxious, upset, stressed, and feeling a wide array of emotions. How do they know if they have PTSD? There are many common signs of the disorder including:
- Avoiding reminders. The victim avoids any reminder of the accident. This means the victim may avoid driving or even riding in a car. The victim may avoid the site of the crash even if it means taking a much longer route.
- Fear combined with sensations of terror and helplessness. An accident is a traumatizing time when victims can be at the mercy of overwhelming forces. Victims who have PTSD often suffer extreme, rapid onset fear that can wreak havoc with their mental state.
- Physical symptoms. Fear and anxiety are two common problems that people with PTSD live with. Due to the extreme emotions, victims may experience rapid heartbeat, difficulty breathing, chills, sweating, and other physical symptoms.
- Uncontrollable thoughts. Anxiety and fear can lead victims to have thoughts that won’t go away. These negative thoughts will threaten to overwhelm the victim and often cannot be controlled without medication or long-term therapy.
- Difficulty concentrating or sleeping. A person living with PTSD often has trouble sleeping, leading to exhaustion and reduced resources for coping with the disorder. This becomes a vicious cycle as they become more and more drained and their PTSD worsens.
- People with PTSD often feel that they can’t relax. After the accident, their bodies are on constant alert for danger. Over time this can drain a victim of energy and leave them exhausted.
These and many other PTSD symptoms may arise in victims. If you’ve been involved in an accident, and you believe you may have PTSD, contact a health professional to get the help you need.
Options for PTSD Compensation Claims
If you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle accident and you are suffering from PTSD, there may be ways to recover compensation, including money to cover:
- Medical bills and treatment costs
- Costs of medication
- Lost income
- Mental anguish
- Lost enjoyment of life
Hurt in an Accident? Living with PTSD? Call Klein Lawyers Today
PTSD is a serious condition that requires careful and deliberate treatment. If you have PTSD that resulted from a motor vehicle accident, we can help build your claim for compensation. At Klein Lawyers, we work with accident victims who are suffering and help them find the compensation they need to move forward with their lives.