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Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a common mental health problem suffered by people following a serious car accident. Knowing what to look for and how to get help can make a big difference in your recovery.
The Canadian Mental Health Association defines PTSD as a mental illness following exposure to a traumatic situation involving death or the threat of death, serious injury, or sexual violence. Anxiety BC also provides an excellent resource for understanding, identifying, and living with PTSD.
For many car accident victims, PTSD is a very real concern. If left unchecked, PTSD can be lead to more serious problems like depression, drug or alcohol dependence, thoughts of suicide, and physical health problems. That’s why it’s important to recognize the signs and talk to a doctor or counsellor about it.
So what should you look for? The signs of PTSD can start very early. In the hours and days after a crash, victims often feel a sense of shock and disbelief, lingering feelings of anger, anxiety, or worry, and a fear that it might happen again. Victims also note reliving the accident in their minds, both when awake and when asleep. For those suffering with PTSD, these feelings of stress and anxiety can last for weeks and months after the accident.
Of course, it’s quite normal to feel anxious after a car crash – it’s a jarring and frightening experience. For most people, those feelings quickly go away. They put the accident behind them and move on. Yet for people with PTSD, those feelings stick around much longer and can have a debilitating impact on daily life. Some signs that you may have PTSD after a car crash include:
If you’ve been in a car accident and are experiencing these problems, get help. Talk to your loved ones about the problem and your feelings and seek the advice of a trained counselor or mental health professional. Bottling up these feelings and keeping them to yourself only prolongs the problem and can make things worse.
And remember, if you do have PTSD, it’s also important to look after your physical health. A healthy mind and healthy body go hand in hand. Do your best to stay active, eat a healthy diet, and get back to regular routines as soon as possible. All of these help to alleviate some of the mental stresses suffered after a crash.
Mental health is just as important as physical health. While a serious car crash can leave you with serious injuries, you also need to pay attention to your mental health. You can learn more about PTSD by clicking the resources below and make sure to share them and this article on social media with the hashtag #BackToLifeWithSV.
Getting injured in a car crash can often lead to long-term pain and physical problems that seem almost impossible to recover from. But thanks to the wonderful treatment of physiotherapists, there are many ways to manage, alleviate, or overcome the pain of a car accident injury. Here are a few ways physiotherapists can help.
1 – Helping with recovery
Stiffness, pain, reduced range of motion, headaches – these are all common problems suffered after being injured in a car accident. A physiotherapist can help with these problems by designing therapy and exercise treatments that can help improve strength and flexibility to tissues in the injured area. The treatments can also alleviate pain and help you understand what is happening with your body and its recovery.
2 – Preventing further damage
Sometimes, injured people don’t always know just how severe their injury is and in other cases, the real pain and trauma shows up some time after the accident. A physiotherapist can help with identifying problem areas that may arise in the future and provide treatment that may help prevent smaller injuries develop into long-term problems. The sooner you start your recovery treatment the better off you’ll be in the long run.
3 – Activities to reduce pain
If you’ve been severely hurt, moving around may seem like the last thing you want to do. But in many cases, physical activity can help reduce your pain and help the recovery process. Our bodies are amazing machines that work best when they are actually working. A physiotherapist can prescribe treatments to keep you active and mobile and on track for recovery while minimizing your pain.
4 – Cutting down the need for surgery
In some cases, surgery is inevitable, but in other cases surgery may be avoided by the efforts of an experienced physiotherapist. By strengthening the muscles, tendons, and ligaments around the affected area, a physiotherapist may be able to help you find a recovery solution that avoids surgery.
No matter the severity of your injury, always talk to your doctor first. While physiotherapy offers many benefits to some injury patients, other methods may be more suitable to your needs. Your doctor will know what is best for your situation. If he or she recommends physiotherapy as part of your treatment and recovery, our team can help provide a list of qualified practitioners and supply other resources to help you.
Whack! You’ve had a sudden knock to the head and suddenly you find yourself in pain and in a fog. A trip to the emergency room and a few doctor visits later and it’s confirmed: you have a concussion or a mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). Whether you got it playing a contact sport, whiplash from a car crash, or falling on a slippery sidewalk, dealing with a concussion can be an ordeal. But with proper diagnosis and treatment, you can recover and get back to your regular routine.
Concussions are usually caused by a direct or indirect hit to the head. This trauma leads to internal bleeding, bruising, fluid build-up, tissue damage, or increased pressure on your brain. Some concussions can lead to cognitive, physical, or emotional problems. You may find it hard to concentrate or feel in a fog. You may experience headaches, tiredness, dizziness, and memory loss. The symptoms will vary according to your specific injury and so too will the treatment. That’s why the first thing to do is to seek immediate medical help. An early diagnosis and treatment plan can optimize your recovery.
A concussion can have serious repercussions in the short and long term. This is why any concussion should be taken seriously. It’s also why so much attention is given to athletes who have suffered a concussion. From professional leagues to school teams, athletes, coaches, teachers, parents, and the general public take concussions much more seriously than in the past. You should, too.
The first step is to seek and follow medical advice. That means slowing things down, resting, and taking it easy for a bit. Returning too quickly to your regular activity can prolong or worsen your symptoms.
Research on concussions is evolving and we learn more and more with each breakthrough. Aside from following doctor’s orders, here are some things you can do improve your recovery:
You should also discuss your concussion with your family and employer. You’re going to have to rely on loved ones for physical and emotional support and most employers offer programs, benefits, or allowances to help with employees who have been injured. Talk to them and get the help you need to ensure a full recovery.
If you or someone you know has suffered a serious head injury as a result of a crash, accident, or someone’s negligence, you have rights. Contact us today to discuss how our team can help you get on the path to recovery.