PTSD and Other Mental Challenges After a Crash

When most people think of car accidents, they think of injuries like broken bones, concussions, bruises, lacerations, and other types of physical trauma. However, it is not uncommon for vehicle crash victims to suffer from significant emotional in psychological trauma, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Here, we want to discuss how often PTSD occurs after vehicle accidents happen as well as whether or not individuals can recover compensation for emotional and psychological issues they have after the crash.

What the Data Reveals About PTSD and Car Accidents

According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), nearly 40% of all individuals involved in vehicle accidents sustain symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. This is an important statistic because most people think that car accident injuries are simply physical injuries. That is certainly not the case.

Individuals who develop PTSD, or even lesser forms of emotional and psychological challenges after an accident, can struggle significantly. It is not uncommon for car accident victims to develop feelings of anxiety, stress, fear, sleeplessness, and more. Individuals could experience flashbacks and significant anxiety when they go past the scene of the accident or experience anything that reminds them of the incident. This can include sites of accidents on TV, certain sounds, or even smells.

When we discuss PTSD and vehicle accidents, we know that various risk factors could increase a driver or passenger’s chance of developing PTSD or other emotional and psychological symptoms. This could include individuals who have a history of past traumatic events, psychopathy in their family history, and those who have a lack of emotional support following a traumatic incident.

Any person who has been involved in a vehicle accident is encouraged to be on the lookout for signs and symptoms of PTSD. All crash victims should go to a doctor as soon as possible, and they should continue going to a doctor and all follow-up care until they have reached maximum medical improvement. It is crucial to discuss any emotional and psychological trauma you are experiencing as a result of the crash, the injuries, and the continued treatment.

Why Compensation is Needed for Car Accident Injuries

Any person who has been injured in a vehicle accident should be able to recover compensation for their injuries. That includes coverage of expenses caused by traumatic injuries as well as PTSD and other emotional and psychological traumas. Mental health care can be costly, but it can also be harder to measure. To properly come up with a calculation for emotional and psychological trauma, often referred to as pain and suffering damages, it is important to have a documented history of going to the doctor and discussing these symptoms.

To properly come up with an adequate dollar figure for emotional and psychological trauma, a Seattle car accident attorney will often use a “multiplier method,” which means they will add up all of the economic expenses such as medical bills, lost wages, and property damage expenses, and then multiply that total by a set number (typically a number ranging from 1.5 to 5).