A personal injury can be harrowing, whether you encounter it in a car accident, workplace mishap, a slip-and-fall, or due to a defective product. Beyond the physical suffering, you will probably find yourself battling with emotional trauma. According to a survey, the incidence of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among road accident survivors in the US was 46.5%. That’s almost half the victims dealing with the emotional burden of accidents.
Unfortunately, most victims experiencing these issues fail to pay attention to them and focus mainly on the treatment of physical injuries. They hardly realize the long-term impact of leaving the mental scars untreated until they end up with full-blown depression or anxiety disorders. As a victim, you must know about the emotional burden you might face to build your defenses against it.
Here are a few valuable insights into the impact a personal injury may have on your mind.
Acknowledge Your Emotions
Negative emotions such as anger, anxiety, fear, and sadness may flood you after getting injured due to someone else’s negligence. These emotions are absolutely normal, so you should accept and acknowledge them.
Consider the case of a teen volleyball player who lost her legs in a deadly car crash in St. Louis in June 2023. You can imagine the pain and trauma the girl would have gone through, losing her career and future. Hiring St. Louis personal injury lawyers to sue the guilty driver and the city of St. Louis was perhaps the only way for her to seek justice. But no amount of money can relieve the emotional scars.
TorHoerman Law notes that victims suffering due to someone else’s negligence are entitled to compensation for their physical injuries and emotional trauma. But before going ahead with a claim, they must reclaim their sanity. That is possible only when one acknowledges the negative emotions and decides to move on.
Counter Negative Thoughts With Positive Ones
The best way to deal with negative thoughts is to counter them with positive ones. Research validates the science behind positive thinking techniques with statistical evidence. You can practice it to restore your emotional well-being and move on the road to recovery after a traumatic personal injury. Here are a few expert-recommended steps to harness the power of positive thinking:
- Cultivate gratitude by focusing on the aspects that remain unaffected by the injury, such as your family and relationships.
- Surround yourself with positive affirmations.
- Nurture your inner strength and resilience.
- Focus on things you can control, such as healing your injuries.
- Seek emotional support from loved ones.
Look for Professional Help
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is common among personal injury victims. If you suffer from PTSD, you may experience symptoms like extreme anxiety, flashbacks, and nightmares. Watch out for these red flags and seek professional help sooner rather than later if you experience any of them. Delays will only worsen the situation because PTSD does not heal by itself.
Therapies like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) are required to manage the condition. Consider it a part of your medical treatment for your injury because it is as crucial as physical therapy and medication. You may feel apprehensive about the cost of the treatment. Fortunately, you can include it in the value of your personal injury claim.
Invest in Self-Care and Coping Strategies
While professional support can help you deal with the emotional burden of a personal injury, self-care can also play a key role in recovery. According to NIH, healthy self-care activities ensure emotional and psychological well-being. Adopting these coping strategies should be your priority after an accident:
- Avoid being sedentary due to the injury, and engage in physical activities according to your capacity.
- Eat a healing diet that promotes physical and psychological well-being.
- Get adequate sleep as it speeds up the healing process.
- Take breaks when needed and spend quality time with loved ones.
- Prioritize activities that induce relaxation and alleviate stress.
- Engage in hobbies that bring you joy.
- Embrace positive practices like journaling and volunteering for a cause.
Emotional healing is not just about adopting these coping strategies to speed up your recovery. It is about making them a way of life as you start from scratch.
The Bottom Line
Recovery from a personal injury takes time. Trying too hard can increase your emotional burden and stress you out. Experts advise letting things work at their pace instead of pushing yourself to overcome the negative impact of your injuries.
Patience, self-compassion, and resilience can be your saviors. Additionally, understanding the emotional toll of personal injuries can help victims create a tangible comeback strategy. With the right mindset, you can find your way back and resume normalcy again, no matter how severe your injuries are.
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