3 Things You Can Do To Combat PTSD After A Car Accident

Most people will experience a car accident at least once in their lives. In fact, according to insurance industry estimates, the average driver files a car accident claim once every 17.9 years, which adds up to 3 or 4 accidents over the course of your lifetime as a driver. The likelihood is that your accident won't be fatal, and it may not even cause serious physical injuries, but that doesn't mean that it won't be traumatic. As a matter of fact, a British study suggests that one-third of drivers involved in non-fatal accidents experience PTSD symptoms and that you're just as likely to have these symptoms even if you didn't have serious physical injuries. Take a look at some things that you can do to deal with PTSD after an accident.

Practice Good Self-Care

It's easy to think that if you don't have obvious physical injuries, you should be able to jump right back into your normal life and routine after an accident. But it's just as important to take the time to take care of yourself when you're suffering from the mental and emotional aftereffects of trauma as it is when you're recovering from a physical injury.

It's OK to take the day off work, reach out to friends and family for support, and do something that you find fun or comforting to distract yourself from thoughts of the accident. Make sure that you're eating well and resting. Not only is it good for your mental and emotional health to give yourself a break and take care of yourself, it's important for your physical health as well. Some physical injuries aren't immediately apparent after a car accident, and taking things slowly after an accident can help prevent aggravating an injury that you didn't know that you had.

Seek Medical Help

If you have symptoms of PTSD (including anxiety, depression, phobias, and sleep disturbances) that are severe, long-lasting, or disruptive to your life, it's important that you don't try to power through them alone. Your symptoms are as real as any physical symptoms, and there are medical remedies that can help you address them.

Some people benefit from psychotherapy. Talking about your experience with a sympathetic professional can be very effective. A therapist can help you develop tools to deal with your symptoms. Other people benefit from medication. There are very effective drugs that can help you manage conditions like anxiety and depression, as long as you take them under the supervision of a licensed medical professional. Still other people benefit from alternative treatments, like hypnosis. You may even find that two or more of these methods work best for managing your PTSD.

Take a Defensive Driving Course

Taking a class might seem like a strange way to deal with PTSD, but you'd be surprised how effective it can be. One thing that's frightening about being involved in an accident is the loss of control you can feel during the accident and in the aftermath.

Taking a defensive driving course can help you regain some of that control. While you can't control the actions of other drivers on the road, you can control your reactions and learn to spot dangers in advance. This can help you avoid accidents and serious injuries in the future. Signing up for a defensive driving course doesn't mean that you're a bad driver or that the accident was your fault. It's a proactive measure that will help you protect yourself more effectively in the future.

Monetary compensation can't erase PTSD or restore your peace of mind. However, a fair settlement can help pay for your losses and any treatments that you need, and being compensated for your injuries or property damage can give you a sense of closure as well. If you've been in an auto accident, contact an auto accident attorney in your area to find out about your rights before agreeing to a settlement with an insurance company. Visit a site like http://www.bjhmaldenlaw.com for more information.