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Understanding PTSD After A Car Crash

Car accidents can be extremely traumatic events that spark PTSD symptoms in many survivors. This guide will walk you through what you need to understand about PTSD after a car crash – from causes to symptoms to compensation options with the help of a Houston car accident attorney – so you can get your life back on track.

What Causes PTSD Following a Car Accident?

A traumatic car accident can shake you to your core. Even after the smashed metal has been hauled away, the memories and anxiety may haunt you. This is known as post-traumatic stress disorder or PTSD, and there are a few reasons why it develops.

Being in a dangerous, uncontrollable situation like a severe collision activates your body’s fight or flight response. Your adrenaline surges as your senses go on high alert. This rush of stress hormones, while helpful in the moment, can create deep-seated fears that last long after the threat has passed.

Witnessing or being directly involved in violence or injury also plays a role. Seeing others hurt or killed in the accident or sustaining injuries yourself can be profoundly disturbing experiences that lead to PTSD—the more intense and life-threatening the trauma, the higher the risk. Your mental and emotional state before the crash influences how susceptible you are to PTSD.

Common Symptoms of PTSD After a Car Crash

Survivors of a serious car accident often experience psychological effects that persist long after any physical injuries have healed.

Flashbacks and intrusive thoughts about the traumatic event are common symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. You may frequently relive the accident through unwanted memories, nightmares, or scary thoughts that pop into your mind during the day.

Anxiety and increased arousal are also frequent symptoms. You may feel constantly on edge or jittery. Loud noises or sirens can trigger panic attacks. Difficulty sleeping is common, as fears and memories keep you awake at night.

car accidents can trigger mental health problems

When to Seek Treatment for PTSD

It’s a good idea to seek professional treatment if:

Your Symptoms Interfere With Your Life

If memories or anxiety about the accident make it difficult to work, spend time with loved ones, or engage in hobbies you once enjoyed, talk to your doctor. A therapist can help you better manage your symptoms so you can get back to living fully again.

You Have Trouble Sleeping or Concentrating

Lack of sleep and difficulty focusing are common signs of PTSD. Speaking with a professional counselor or psychiatrist can help you develop strategies to improve your sleep, reduce anxiety and distracting thoughts, and refocus your mind.

You Turn to Unhealthy Coping Mechanisms

Some people with PTSD may increase alcohol or drug use, engage in reckless behavior, or isolate themselves to avoid triggers. These coping strategies often make symptoms worse. Seeking counseling and support groups are much healthier ways to learn to live with your trauma.

Finding the Right Houston Car Accident Lawyer

When you’ve been in a car accident, the last thing you want is a stressful legal battle. However, to get the compensation you deserve, hiring an experienced Houston car accident lawyer is important. Look for attorneys with a proven track record of success in cases similar to yours. Call our firm today at 346-220-1821 for a free consultation.

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