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Can Car Accidents Cause PTSD?

Written by: The Law Offices of John D. Ameen, P.A.

When you think of post-traumatic stress disorder, your mind probably flashes to images of soldiers returning home from war. But, did you know that car accidents are actually a leading cause of PTSD in the U.S.?

What Is PTSD and What Causes It?

PTSD is a psychological disorder that develops after a person witnesses or experiences a traumatic event, such as a serious car crash, assault, abuse, wartime/conflict, or a natural disaster. Essentially, the disorder heightens one’s fight-or-flight response and makes them feel anxious, stressed, or frightened in even safe situations. Other symptoms may include:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Hypervigilance
  • Panic attacks
  • Flashbacks
  • Nightmares
  • Intrusive thoughts

According to a study done by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), nearly 40% of car accident survivors develop symptoms of PTSD. While it’s not fully understood why some people develop this disorder and not others, several factors play a role in who exactly is at risk, including:

  • Family history of mental health
  • High levels of emotion during or after the traumatic event
  • History of prior trauma
  • Lacking support after the event
  • Dissociation during or after the event
  • The severity and nature of the event

How Is PTSD Treated?

For individuals who suffer from PTSD, it’s easy to feel like you will never get your life back. The good news is that there are effective treatment options available to help minimize or eliminate symptoms:

  • Prolonged exposure therapy
  • Cognitive processing therapy
  • Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR)

If you or a loved one developed PTSD after a car accident in Florida, you deserve to be properly compensated so you can get the treatment you need. At the Law Offices of John D. Ameen, our Fort Lauderdale car accident attorneys will go above and beyond to fight for you and help you move forward with your life.

Contact our firm at (800) 953-2858 to speak with our legal team for free today. We offer no-fee, no-obligation consultations.

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