When people hear the word “injury”, most will think about broken bones, skull fractures, paralysis, and so forth. These injuries tend to be more obvious and are often immediately noticeable after a car accident; however, there is another type of injury known as the “invisible injury”. These are just as common as the obvious injuries, but may not be diagnosed for days, weeks, or even months following the car accident. Invisible injuries tend to affect the victim on an emotional and mental level, but can also cause physical symptoms. Invisible injuries can be debilitating and even life threatening.
The lawyers at [law firm name] have helped many clients who suffered invisible injuries. Some thought they were okay only to realize that they were suffering from PTSD. Others were traumatized after witnessing a death of another person involved in the accident. The following information is meant to help people who have suffered from invisible injuries learn about their legal rights and options.
Understanding Emotional and Mental Injuries Following a Car Accident
Car accidents can be extremely stressful. When people were injured, the odds of those involved suffering from PTSD like symptoms are high. Often car accident victims are unable to process what happened. They might feel confused, overwhelmed, or even guilty. This can result in depression, anxiety, mood swings, PTSD, irrational fears, and many more emotional and mental health symptoms.
Discussing Your Symptoms with a Qualified Doctor
Following a car accident you should seek medical attention regardless of feeling any physical pain or sensation. If you’re feeling any of the following mental or emotional symptoms, you should also let your doctor know about them:
- You feel afraid to get into a car
- You no longer want to drive
- You are having nightmares about the accident
- You cannot sleep
- You are unable to work or perform your daily tasks
- You are having flashbacks
- You feel unable to visit the location of the accident, or locations similar to the scene
- You are having mood swings or panic attacks
- You feel guilty for what happened
- You are feeling suicidal
Many of the aforementioned symptoms are common in people who have been involved in a car accident. It is important to understand that by talking about them to your doctor, you may be able to get the help you need. Furthermore, they can be documented into your medical records and used as a form of evidence by the lawyers who are handling your case.
Treating Invisible Injuries
Once you inform your doctor of your emotional and mental pain, he or she may refer you to a therapist. There are many different types of therapist, and each will have his or her own method of treating a patient. In general, the role of a therapist is to allow you to identify your feelings and thoughts about the car accident. After which, you can begin to work through each one in a healthy and productive manner; thereby, inviting your body and mind to heal. If you are going to therapy sessions, a lawyer should include these financial losses into a claim.
Seeking Compensation for Mental and Emotional Distress
If you have suffered from emotional or mental distress, it may be possible to recover monetary damages from the negligent driver. It should be noted that this type of injury is not always easy to prove, and is often refuted by insurance companies. If you would like to file a claim or lawsuit that will include mental and emotional distress you should be prepared to show a lawyer the following:
- The police report
- Your medical records
- Any medical bills
- Photographs of the scene
- Doctors referrals to a therapist
- Records from the therapist
- Any prescriptions given to you to treat emotional /mental distress
- + More
A car accident can be extremely traumatic for the victims and any witnesses. It has the ability to change lives forever, and can certainly cause extreme amounts of physical, mental, and emotional harm. Having one of the top car accident lawyers representing you may make the legal process go more smoothly and relieve some of your stress.