If you have been injured in an accident and you want to make a PTSD compensation claim for personal injury and loss just complete the contact form, email our lawyers offices or use the solicitors helpline. Our PTSD solicitors offer advice at no cost, without further obligation. If our PTSD solicitors deal with your claim it will be on a no win no fee basis, compensation is paid in full and you do not have to fund or finance your accident compensation claim.
In most cases this injury will not have been caused by a car accident however there is a significant proportion that is a direct result of motor vehicle collisions. Car accidents are a major cause of anxiety and post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and represent more than half of all cases handled by personal injury solicitors.
Post traumatic stress disorder is also called PTSD and is a psychological response to trauma. It is considered one of the anxiety disorders and occurs after you have experienced a traumatic event that involved the perception of injury or death or actual injury or death.
The causes of PTSD may occur right after the trauma occurs or can be delayed for more than six months past the traumatic event. If the disorder occurs soon after the trauma, it has the chance of being resolved within three months of the event. Some people can have prolonged PTSD that lasts for many years or for a lifetime.
PTSD can occur at any age and often follows natural disasters like tsunamis, floods, or fires, or non-natural events such as prison stays, war events, assaults, rape or domestic violence. Large terrorist events can trigger PTSD in those who witnessed the event or those who lost loved ones in the event. Not everyone who experiences a traumatic event can come down with PTSD and PTSD can happen with relatively minor events in some people. The exact cause of PTSD is not known but there are psychological, genetic, social and physical factors involved in who gets PTSD and who does not. The bodys stress hormones are affected and the body relives the stress it once had in real life. Previous traumatic events increase the risk of developing PTSD.
Symptoms of PTSD include feeling as though you are reliving the event, which interrupts daily activities. You get flashback episodes, where the event seems like it is happening again and again. You develop recurrent memories of the event, which are distressing and interfere with daily life. You can have nightmares or bad dreams of the event or have physical reactions to situations that remind you of the traumatic event.
There are avoidance reactions in PTSD. You feel emotionally numb as though nothing else matters and feelings of detachment from the world or just from other people. You cant remember important parts of the traumatic event and you don't have the same kind of interest in normal activities. Your moods are suppressed or changing all the time and you stay away from anything that reminds you of the traumatic event. You feel sad, as though you have no future.
There are problems with arousal such as difficulty concentrating, exaggerated response to things that are startling to you, irritation or anger outbursts, sleeping problems and hypervigilance. There are guilty feelings, especially if you caused the trauma or if you survived and others did not (called survivors guilt). Other typical symptoms are agitation, dizziness, fainting spells, excitability, palpitations, feeling pale, having a headache and a fever.
There are no specific tests to diagnose PTSD but a thorough psychological examination can uncover PTSD. PTSD can mimic other anxiety and depressive disorders so that it sometimes takes some digging to uncover the presence of post traumatic stress. A physical examination is sometimes warranted to rule out physical causes of the disorders symptoms.
The treatment of PTSD depends on how long you have had the symptoms and what symptoms you have. You need psychiatric or psychological therapy that might include talk therapy and medication therapy for anxiety or depressive symptoms. Behavioural therapy can help with avoidance and other symptoms that impact a persons daily life. Eventually you can become exposed to events similar to the one you have PTSD from and can still function without feeling trauma and anxiety.
Common medications for PTSD include SSRIs, which are antidepressants such as fluoxetine or Prozac. Benzodiazepines such as clonazepam or Valium are used to treat symptoms of anxiety.
Support groups can be helpful with post traumatic stress. People who have been suffering from similar issues can be very helpful, especially when a large number of people have undergone the same or similar trauma.
Anxiety disorders including PTSD are very common, affecting 4 million Australians older than age 18 per year. It is a disease of uncertainty or fearfulness and tends to be debilitating if not treated very carefully and promptly. Anxiety disorders that last six months or more are considered to be medically significant and commonly lead to alcohol use or substance abuse. This can mask the anxiety and make it difficult to diagnose.
The best therapies for anxiety disorders include medications to control the anxiety symptoms and psychotherapy to learn how to deal with the symptoms. Biofeedback is good for anxiety disorders as well. There are different kinds of anxiety disorders, including general anxiety disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder or OCD, post traumatic stress disorder or PTSD, social phobia or social anxiety disorder and specific phobias. Each are treated slightly differently from one another.
Panic disorder is a type of anxiety disorder that involves sudden attacks of terrifying feelings and physical feelings like sweating, pounding of the heart, faintness, chest pain and weakness. People are debilitated during an attack. They may have a multitude of other symptoms like nausea, vomiting or numbness and the person usually feels unreal. The treatments of panic disorders are medications like Paxil that control anxiety and panic attacks. Therapy seems to help as well. Panic attacks can occur during sleep or during any time of the day. They can last as little as ten minutes or last longer than that.
Panic disorders affect around 500,000 adults in Australia each year and are twice as common in women as it is in men. Panic attacks define the single attack. Not everyone who gets a panic attack will get a panic disorder. There appears to be a hereditary component to who gets a panic attack and who does not.
If panic disorder progresses, you get agoraphobia or a fear of leaving your house. This is why it is important to treat panic disorder promptly with medication and psychotherapy so that depression and agoraphobia does not occur secondarily. Drug abuse and alcoholism are secondary factors to having panic disorder.
Obsessive compulsive disorder involves persistent and upsetting thoughts called obsessions and rituals or compulsions that go along with the obsessions. Many people are obsessed with germs or dirt and can involve obsessions around intruders or locking doors, shutting off faucets or shutting off stoves.
People with OCD can have hand washing compulsions, counting compulsions or the need to lock and relock the doors. Compulsively combing ones hair can be a problem and other compulsions can debilitate the individuals who have the disease. Repeated checking or touching of things can be compulsions a person who has OCD may have. Some compulsions can be in healthy people but it is the nature of the compulsions and the frequency of the compulsions that makes OCD.
The treatment of OCD is medication management with medications that control compulsions and anxiety. Psychotherapy and cognitive behavioral therapy can help a person with OCD manage their symptoms and sometimes alleviate the symptoms altogether.
OCD affects 200,000 adult Australians and you can have accompanied eating disorders and other anxiety disorders along with it. Men and women get the disease at the same frequency and it usually starts in childhood or adolescence but it can affect people in their adult years primarily. There may be a hereditary component to the disease.
Post traumatic stress disorder is an anxiety disorder that happens after a major trauma, such as a war, sexual or physical abuse, car accident or other major trauma. PTSD can occur immediately after the trauma or years later, depending on the person. It causes nightmares, persistent thoughts of the event, an easy startle response, emotional numbness and loss of interest in normal activities. PTSD can be made worse by another traumatic event in ones life. Flashbacks of the event can be a common phenomenon experienced by the person.
Over 500,000 Australians suffer from PTSD. The treatment is psychotherapy and medications to control the symptoms of anxiety and pain the person experiences.
If you have suffered physically, mentally or financially, you should consider making an accident compensation claim. For telephone advice at no cost from PTSD solicitors just call the helpline. Our PTSD solicitors will assess the strength of your claim and will advise you on your potential award of compensation without any further obligation.LAWYER HELPLINE: ☎ 1800 339 958
The author of the substantive medical writing on this website is Dr. Christine Traxler MD whose biography can be read here