Can You Get PTSD From a Car Accident?

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can manifest as a result of a severe car accident. In fact, car wrecks are the most common cause of it nationwide. This should come as no surprise– given the sheer volume of major vehicle accidents that happen each year.

Our New York City car accident lawyers can assist you in recovering monetary compensation. PTSD can impact not only your health but your ability to earn a living or care for yourself. Contact us at Douglas & London right away to learn how the right legal counsel could ease the challenges of post-accident PTSD.

The impact of PTSD

PTSD can take many forms. Many people associate this disorder with flashbacks, nightmares, or traumatic memories. While this is common, there are other ways it can manifest, such as a detached attitude, flattened affect or a general malaise or depression that results in a loss of executive functioning.

One of the most obvious impacts of PTSD is known as avoidance behavior. After a traumatic event, it is common for a person to avoid situations that remind them of that trauma. In the case of a car accident, even getting into a car can trigger an overwhelming emotional response.

How PTSD can occur following a car accident

There has been substantial academic research on what brings about PTSD after a crash. A common misconception is that the severity of a crash has a direct impact on the likelihood of developing it. However, a study released in 2012 suggests otherwise. According to this study, it occurs based on the level of danger a person perceives themselves to be in. That is why PTSD is possible in even minor collisions.

Compensation for PTSD after a collision

Like with any injury or illness that results from a car accident, you could have the opportunity to recover monetary compensation. This compensation could start with the cost of treating the disorder. Treatment for PTSD could be costly and often requires months of different modalities.

Damages could be available based solely on your mental anguish. This form of compensation is intended to cover the stress and worry that comes with reliving an accident. In the case of PTSD, these damages could be substantial.

Further, if you are struggling with this, you may be unable to return to work. This is especially true if your job requires travel by car or if your commute is significant. If you are unable to work due to this disorder, the person responsible for the crash could be on the hook for your lost wages. A personal injury attorney will be the person best able to help you recover these damages.

How your attorney could help

If you believe you have PTSD after a car crash, you must seek help from a medical professional immediately. The effects of this disorder can grow worse over time, especially if it goes untreated.

Once you have stabilized your life, your next call should be to an attorney. While PTSD might not leave the outward signs that a broken bone or a severe burn could, the lasting effects of this disorder are real. At Douglas & London, we are prepared to hold the person responsible for your PTSD accountable. To discuss how the New York City personal injury lawyers at Douglas & London can put their decades of experience to work on your behalf, schedule a free consultation as soon as possible.