Emotional trauma and car accidents

On Behalf of | Jan 18, 2023 | Personal Injury

Every year, Americans experience millions of car crashes. These collisions are just a fact of life on roadways across the country, including here in Missoula, Montana. Unfortunately, the focus of these accidents is often the physical damage to body and property, and the emotional trauma of these collisions is often forgotten. However, every car accident victim experiences some level of emotional trauma, and this trauma may need medical attention, just like physical trauma.

Initial impact trauma

The seconds before the impact, the impact itself and the moments directly after the car accident are traumatic, even if the accident is a slow-speed collision. Squealing tires, broken glass, loud noises, screams, etc., are all Hallmarks of car accidents that can cause emotional trauma. At a very basic level, you will at least experience shock. Right after the impact, you may experience waives of fear, nervousness, worry and trouble, believing you were just hit.

Usually goes away, but not always

Usually, these initial emotional traumas pass quickly, but that is not the case for everyone. For some, these traumas only grow worse, and when this happens, it may be a sign of post-traumatic stress.

What does post-traumatic stress look like?

If you cannot stop thinking about the car accident to the point where it is causing you anxiety and restlessness, you likely have post-traumatic stress. Trouble sleeping, nightmares, irritability and excessive worrying could also be signs. In extreme cases, you may experience debilitating anxiety around cars and roads.

You need treatment

If you are experiencing post-traumatic stress, you need treatment. Once the escalation begins, it usually does not stop without some sort of mental health care intervention. Of course, there are things you can do on your own, like staying active and talking with your family and friends, but you will likely need professional assistance to deal with your post-traumatic stress.

Document the emotional trauma

Once you believe that you are experiencing post-traumatic stress, let your Missoula, Montana, personal injury attorney know. They can help you document your trauma and make sure that you receive additional compensation from the negligent driver that caused it.

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