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Signs of PTSD After a Motorcycle Accident

April 2, 2021Motorcycle Accidents

PTSD After a Motorcycle Accident

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a common delayed symptom that can appear in the days following a motorcycle accident. Children are especially susceptible. Seek medical care immediately if you experience or notice a loved one suffering from any of the following signs of PTSD. 

Signs of PTSD After a Motorcycle Accident

Reliving Aspects of the Accident

This can include:

  • Vivid flashbacks (feeling like the trauma is happening right now)
  • Intrusive thoughts or images
  • Nightmares
  • Intense distress at real or symbolic reminders of the trauma
  • Physical sensations such as pain, sweating, nausea, or trembling

Alertness or Feeling on Edge

This can include:

  • Panicking when reminded of the accident
  • Being easily upset or angry
  • Extreme alertness or “hypervigilance”
  • Disturbed sleep or a lack of sleep
  • Irritability or aggressive behavior
  • Finding it hard to concentrate — including on simple or everyday tasks
  • Being jumpy or easily startled
  • Other symptoms of anxiety

Avoiding Feelings or Memories

This can include:

  • Feeling like you have to keep busy
  • Avoiding places, things, or events that remind you of the accident
  • Unable to remember details of what happened
  • Feeling emotionally numb or cut off from your feelings
  • Feeling physically numb or detached from your body
  • Unable to express affection
  • Self-destructive or reckless behavior
  • Using alcohol or drugs to avoid memories

Difficult Beliefs or Feelings

This can include:

  • Feeling like you can’t trust anyone
  • Feeling like nowhere is safe
  • Feeling like no one understands
  • Blaming yourself for what happened
  • Overwhelming feelings of anger, sadness, guilt, or shame

Some of these symptoms are common after a serious motorcycle accident and will fade in the days following. When symptoms of PTSD last for at least a month, a medical evaluation can determine if you have the disorder. If you are diagnosed with PTSD, the symptoms can last for months or years after the motorcycle crash. Treatment can include counseling, psychotherapy, and medications such as antidepressants or ones to control anxiety. 

Who Is At Risk of Developing PTSD After a Motorcycle Accident? 

PTSD is quite common following a motorcycle crash, and anyone involved or a witness to one can suffer from it. Those who are mainly at a high risk of developing PTSD after a motorcycle accident includes: 

  • Individuals who already have a history of depression or anxiety
  • Individuals who have some feeling of guilt regarding the accident
  • Survivors of a crash where someone died 
  • Females
  • Individuals who suffer from a prior violent injury 

The Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medicine released a study in 2009 that reported approximately 25 percent of people injured in a motor vehicle accident develop PTSD. 

Recovering Damages for PTSD Caused By a Motorcycle Accident 

You have the right to recover damages if you are diagnosed with PTSD after a motorcycle accident. However, it can be challenging to link emotional injuries like PTSD to a crash since symptoms typically don’t become evident until months later. It is critical to work with an experienced Houston motorcycle accident lawyer, as soon as they will work with your treatment team and can help you prove your diagnosis is related to the crash. Call our Houston injury attorneys at Ramsey Law Group at (888) 335-7477 today to schedule a free consultation.