Can you get PTSD from a car accident?

According to the federal government, approximately five percent of the American adult population suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) at any given time. Some of these adults have been through traumatic experiences, or they have witnessed those traumatic events. For instance, it is fairly common for soldiers to develop PTSD if they have been in combat, especially if they have been injured or watched their fellow soldiers suffer serious injuries.

That being said, the majority of people will never be in combat or have a job that is as dangerous as being in the military. For them, a car accident is probably the most dangerous event that could take place. Could something like this lead to post-traumatic stress disorder?

This is a disorder that can change your life

Yes, you definitely can get PTSD from a car accident. This is especially true if you were seriously injured in the accident or if someone else passed away as a result of it. Once again, you probably have not been through anything else that is nearly as traumatic as this event, so a PTSD diagnosis would not be surprising.

One thing to remember is that this diagnosis can impact your life on numerous levels. Some people simply have to deal with the symptoms of PTSD while they go through rehabilitation or work with a therapist. But there is no guarantee that you will ever fully shake the symptoms or be free from this disorder. It manifests differently from person to person and can result in a variety of different symptoms.

For instance, some people who get involved in a car accident may not be able to drive afterward. They may have physically recovered to a degree that they could drive safely, but they cannot get over the mental and emotional hurdle of getting in a car again. In many cases, this fear will be the most obvious if they have to drive – or even ride in a car – near the place where the accident occurred.

A complicated situation

Treatment for these types of disorders can be extensive and complicated. If you’re dealing with PTSD because someone else’s negligence caused a crash, then you need to know about your legal options that will allow you to seek compensation. In taking advantage of this opportunity, you can better ensure that you can afford the care that you need and deserve.