Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a serious mental health condition that can affect individuals who have experienced or witnessed a traumatic event, such as a motor vehicle accident. According to the American Psychological Association, PTSD can develop after exposure to actual or threatened death, serious injury, or violence.
Truck accidents can certainly fit this description, as they often involve severe injuries and/or fatalities. In addition to physical injuries, these accidents can significantly impact the mental health of those involved, especially if they experienced or witnessed traumatic events during the collision. Some common symptoms of PTSD that may arise after a truck accident include:
- Intrusive thoughts or memories of the accident
- Flashbacks or nightmares
- Avoidance of situations that may trigger memories of the accident
- Hypervigilance or heightened anxiety
- Feelings of guilt, shame, or self-blame
- Difficulty sleeping or concentrating
- Loss of interest in activities that were once enjoyable
These symptoms can be debilitating and impact an individual’s ability to function in their daily life. It is important to note that not everyone who experiences a truck accident will develop PTSD, and those who do may not experience symptoms until weeks or months after the accident.
The effect of PTSD on individuals involved in truck accidents in Virginia cannot be understated and sometimes can last longer and be more debilitating than physical injuries. Per Virginia Crash Facts, there were 4,953 commercial truck accidents in our state in 2021. The chances are good, then, that there are hundreds or even thousands of people who are living with some form of PTSD after a truck crash.
What are the treatment options for post-traumatic stress disorder?
If you or someone you know is experiencing symptoms of PTSD after a truck accident in Virginia, it is important to seek professional help. There are several treatment options available for PTSD, including therapy and medication.
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is a type of therapy that has been shown to be effective in treating PTSD. CBT focuses on changing negative thought patterns and behaviors that may be contributing to symptoms of PTSD. Through CBT, individuals can learn coping skills to manage their symptoms and regain a sense of control over their lives.
- Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) is another type of therapy that has been shown to be effective in treating PTSD. EMDR involves the use of rapid eye movements or other forms of bilateral stimulation to help individuals process traumatic memories and reduce the emotional impact of those memories.
- Medication can also be helpful in treating PTSD symptoms, especially in conjunction with therapy. Antidepressants, anti-anxiety medications, and other medications may be prescribed by a healthcare provider to help manage symptoms of PTSD.
Resources for coping with PTSD
In addition to seeking professional help, there are several resources available for individuals coping with PTSD after a truck accident in Virginia. These resources can help provide support and assistance during the recovery process.
The Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services offers a list of mental health resources for individuals in Virginia, including crisis hotlines, counseling services, and support groups. The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) also offers resources and support groups for individuals with PTSD and their families.
It is important for individuals with PTSD to have a strong support system of family and friends. Loved ones can provide emotional support and help with practical tasks, such as transportation or household chores, during the recovery process.
PTSD can be a debilitating mental health condition that can arise after a traumatic event, such as a truck accident. It is important for individuals experiencing symptoms of PTSD to seek professional help and utilize resources available for support and assistance. With the right treatment and support, individuals with PTSD can learn to manage their symptoms and regain control over their lives.
How a Richmond-based truck accident attorney can help
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries from a truck accident, you may be eligible for compensation for your losses, including mental and emotional trauma. As such, PTSD is a compensable injury and you can seek compensation if you have developed this condition. A Richmond-based personal injury attorney from Phelan Patty can help you navigate the legal process and fight for the compensation you deserve.
When you work with our team, you partner with a firm who knows how to build a successful case. We will conduct a thorough investigation of the accident to determine liability and identify all potential sources of compensation. This can include reviewing police reports, accident reconstruction reports, and medical records. We’ll also review your employment records, and consult with professionals in the field of finance, life care planning, psychology/psychiatry, and other areas to build a full picture of how the incident affected you.
Once we have a better idea of the extent of your losses, we can begin negotiations with the insurance companies and other parties involved to reach a settlement that compensates you for your damages, including PTSD. If a settlement cannot be reached, your attorney can file a lawsuit on your behalf and represent you in court. We have extensive experience taking complex cases to trial, and have secured millions on behalf of the injured in Virginia.
An experienced attorney can also help advocate for your mental and physical health, helping you obtain the compensation you need to access the resources you need to get better. We are here to help.
Truck accidents can turn your life upside-down. You don’t have to go through it alone. At Phelan Petty, our Richmond-based truck accident lawyers have both the resources and the experience to fight for your best interests and work to secure the compensation to which you’re entitled after an accident that wasn’t your fault. To find out how we can help you after a commercial truck accident, call us or fill out our contact form to schedule a free consultation. We serve clients in Richmond and throughout Virginia.
Michael Phelan is a Virginia trial attorney who practices with a special focus on traumatic brain injury (TBI) cases, pharmaceutical and medical device claims, product liability cases, and truck accidents. Michael’s peers have consistently recognized him for his excellence as a trial lawyer, and his clients have praised him for his commitment to deep research, his outstanding communication skills, and his sincerity and dedication.