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Post Traumatic Stress Disorder: Car accidents can cause it

Those who have served in the U.S. military and faced combat deployment are likely familiar with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. However, military warfare is not the only type of life experience that can cause PTSD. In fact, if you're one of many Colorado car accident victims, you're also at great risk for this condition.

It's understandable that, if you're in an automobile collision, you might feel upset, frightened or confused in the near aftermath of the incident. If these and other symptoms last a month or more, a licensed physician might be prone to diagnose PTSD. Symptoms of this condition are not always immediately apparent. You might not develop symptoms for months, or even years, after the trigger event.

Symptoms can often be in three categories

No matter when symptoms present themselves, there are usually three types associated with PTSD, including insomnia, heightened fear or anxiety caused by perpetuating thoughts of the incident and wanting to avoid any person, place or thing that serves as a reminder of the event. Nightmares, flashbacks, trouble concentrating, feeling nervous or jumpy all the time and other effects may be part of PTSD, as well. If you're in a car accident, even if you didn't suffer physical injury, it is still possible to develop post-traumatic stress due to witnessing others' injuries or simply by being involved in a collision.

Other ways PTSD shows itself

The troubling thoughts associated with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder are usually involuntary and persistent or recurring. It is a good idea to seek medical attention if you feel this way after a car crash. When doing so, it's critical that you tell the physician about the accident; otherwise, he or she might not have any reason to suspect PTSD.

Who should pay?

If another person's negligence or reckless driving behavior caused the collision that resulted in PTSD, a recovering victim may wish to speak to someone well-versed in personal injury law. In a personal injury case, the plaintiff can typically list emotional trauma on the list of damages for which the court can hold the negligent party financially accountable. In addition to financial recovery of losses, if you or your loved one have PTSD, you may also want to meet with a licensed counselor who has experience in helping car accident victims recover from this type of trauma-induced injury.

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