Is post-traumatic stress disorder possible after a car accident?

Many Missouri residents have suffered injuries and car damage after a vehicle accident. It is normal to experience fear, anxiety and worry after being in a vehicle collision. However, when those feelings fail to subside or become stronger over time, there may be a more serious problem.

Post-traumatic stress disorder is a medical condition that is characterized by intense feelings of guilt, fear, uneasiness and anger. In most cases, this condition manifests after a person experiences an intensely frightening or shocking event. PTSD is often diagnosed in military members who have survived combat situations. Medical research has shown that PTSD may develop in nearly anyone who undergoes an intense, frightening vehicle accident. People who are involved in wrecks may fear for their lives or for the safety of their loved ones. These emotionally disturbing events have the potential to cause PTSD.

People who suffer from PTSD may experience a variety of symptoms. For example, a person who develops PTSD after a car accident may feel frightened or extremely nervous when riding in a car. They may have nightmares or difficulty sleeping. Some may experience ongoing, uncontrollable memories of the accident no matter how hard they try to ignore the event. These symptoms may interfere with a person's daily life for an extended period of time.

Surviving a car accident can be a very traumatic experience. An attorney may be able to use evidence from accident reconstructions to assemble a civil claim against a negligent driver who caused an accident. If this is successful, the negligent driver may be liable to cover the plaintiff's medical bills and other accident-related expenses. No information in this article should be construed as specific legal advice.

Source:, "Post-traumatic Stress After a Traffic Accident", January 05, 2015

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