Experiencing Emotional Trauma After a Car Accident
I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Car Accident Lawyer. After being involved in a car accident, it’s normal to feel a mixture of emotions. In most car accidents, the event happens so fast and so unexpectedly that you may feel helpless or unprepared for it. Usually, right after the crash, you’re in shock, and your adrenaline is high. But after the initial impact of the accident disappears, you may start to experience the emotional trauma from the car accident.
You may continue to be in shock for several days after the accident. Even if you were not the driver and you were a passenger or an onlooker in a different car, you can also experience shock after witnessing a traumatic auto accident. Everyone experiences shock differently, but the common symptoms include:
- Being in emotional distress
- Feeling numb
- Feeling afraid
- Having mood swings
- Being in denial
- Social withdrawal
It’s normal to stay away from certain people who may want to talk about the crash. This may make you feel alone or isolated. Be sure to surround yourself with friends and family to receive reassurance and love.
After the feeling of shock fades, you may start to feel angry at the other driver whether he or she was at fault or not. Some passengers may also be agitated with both drivers involved in the crash. Anger is a reasonable part of your stress reaction, but while it’s easy to take this anger out on everyone around you, it’s wise not to act on them. A helpful way to deal with these feelings is to relax and breathe. Doing simple breathing exercises can help you calm down.
You may beat yourself up over a car accident, especially if you thought the crash was preventable. You may feel ashamed and continue to wonder what you could have done differently. Even if you were a passenger, you might blame yourself for not being able to stop the accident. It’s helpful to remind yourself that car accidents can happen to anyone. Be gentle with yourself about it.
Anxiety is a typical reaction to a traumatic car accident. Some people experience no symptoms at all and most people who do go through it will eventually recover. Some common symptoms of anxiety include:
- Difficulty concentrating
- Feeling irritable
- Feeling unsociable
- Having no energy
- Trouble sleeping
One way to combat anxiety is to discuss your feelings about the accident with people you trust, such as a family member, a friend or a therapist. Getting back to your regular routine is also a great way to overcome anxiety. Take care of yourself by eating balanced meals, go for walks and remember to get plenty of rest.
After a car accident, feelings of sadness or depression are widespread and are closely related to the symptoms of anxiety. Similar to anxiety, the best way to handle sadness after a car accident is to discuss it with your loved ones, take care of yourself, and get help if you need it. Practicing these self-help strategies can help you get on the road to recovery.
Car Accident Lawyers in Sacramento
I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Car Accident Lawyer. After a traumatic car accident, the emotions of shock, anxiety, guilt or sadness can cause stress to your body. If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, call me at (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400 for free, friendly legal advice.
I’ve helped many clients in Sacramento and throughout Northern California receive full compensation for their personal injury and wrongful death claims.
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