Car accidents can be extremely traumatic, especially serious car accidents that involve severe injuries or loss of life. Long term physical consequences can completely change one’s life. However, the same applies to psychological consequences.
A severe car accident can be, and often is the cause of severe PTSD in survivors. Leading a normal life in the wake of a serious car accident can be a real challenge. Here are a few tips that might help you reach this goal faster.
Use your Support Network
Traumatic experiences often lead people to shut down and become emotionally distant. According to one study, 22% of all car accident survivors develop some form of PTSD. Dealing with that type of trauma alone is hard, sometimes impossible. Don’t hesitate to use your support network.
Talk to your friends and family about your accident. Share your experience and your feelings regarding what happened. Most people think that talking about their traumatic experience will only make them relive it again while coming across as weak. That’s usually not the case. Talking about trauma has a therapeutic effect on most survivors.
Seek Professional Help
Our friends and family usually want only what’s best for us. That being said, there are instances when even the people who are closest to us can’t really help. In such cases, it’s a good idea to seek professional help.
Talking to a mental health professional has helped millions of people around the world to deal with their traumatic car accidents. Don’t be afraid to seek professional help as it can seriously expedite your recovery.
Cover Yourself Legally
Car accidents where no one is at fault are rare. More often than not, one of the involved parties has caused the accident. Legal experts from Kerley Schaffer LLP, a law firm in Oakland, state that getting compensation for your injuries or other expenses isn’t always easy. Whether it’s your insurance that’s causing the issues or the other party involved, you need to make sure that you’re fully compensated.
Some injuries, including both physical and psychological, can take time to manifest. It’s important that you’re fully covered in case they do appear later on.
Make an Effort to Move On
Moving beyond a traumatic experience is hard. More often than not, it takes an effort to move from that vulnerable spot and start taking steps forward. Different people deal with trauma in their own ways.
That being said, there are things you can do that are known to reduce the effects of trauma over time.
Working out and staying physically active has shown to have tangible positive effects on both PTSD and other associated disorders. Naturally, working out can be difficult if you have physical injuries from the accident. Even so, there are different ways of stimulating your body and benefits from staying active. Exercising also leads to increased production of serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine in your body. These chemicals have a positive effect on your mood and overall mental health. Use exercise as a tool to achieve relief.
Find a Hobby that Motivates You
Hobbies are extremely underrated these days. We live such fast-paced lives that most of us forget how to take a break and smell the roses. Aside from allowing you to pursue your passion, whatever that might be, a hobby also has a therapeutic value.
One of the biggest issues with post car accident trauma is the fact that it tends to preoccupy your thoughts. If this is the case for you, finding something that will distract you and give you a break from thinking about the accident you’ve been involved in, is invaluable.
Establish a Routine
Routines are important. Being able to put at least one part of your life on autopilot will help you move forward. Establishing a routine doesn’t have to happen overnight. Work on it by adding a new component every day or every week. Find a pace that works for you and take your time.
The idea is to one day wake up and realize that you’ve moved on. Establishing a routine is a way of preventing your trauma from taking charge of your life. It’s a means of establishing control over yourself.
Helping others who have had a similar experience to yours is often therapeutic. Even just offering to talk to someone who has recently been in a serious accident can be helpful for both parties. That person will appreciate talking to someone who shares their experience, someone who has gone through the trauma and survived. Working with others often proves to be helpful when it comes to putting that traumatic event in your life behind you.