The effects of a car accident can carry on well beyond the moment of impact.
When an accident survivor, is diagnosed with both, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and traumatic brain injury (TBI) it can be a life long struggle. Anyone, of any age, can experience the either disorder following an accident. While many people talk about the effects of traumatic brain injury or the consequences of post-traumatic stress disorder as two separate conditions, which they are, for the person living with the dual diagnosis of TBI and PTSD, it can be hard to separate them.
Anyone who has been exposed to a life-threatening trauma resulting in brain injury can also develop symptoms for PTSD. Car crashes, falls, floods, fires, and assaults, can happen to anyone anywhere.
To make matters worse, when the two disorders coexist, it’s often difficult to sort out which symptoms belong to which condition. For example, changes in cognition such as memory and concentration, depression, anxiety, insomnia, and fatigue are common with both diagnoses.
What is PTSD?
Post-traumatic stress disorder is an anxiety disorder in which people feel that they are still in danger following an event, even when they are safe and secure. There are a number of symptoms of PTSD. These include re-experiencing symptoms, such as flashbacks, bad dreams, and frightening thoughts.
As a result, people suffering from PTSD tend to try and avoid situations where they may re-experience the event that brought on the disorder in the first place. For example, if PTSD was caused by a car accident, the affected person experience fear while driving and as a result, avoid driving all together.
Symptoms of PTSD
Victims of PTSD may experience hyperarousal symptoms. For example, they may be tense and jittery, have difficulty sleeping, and/or have angry outbursts.
In order to be diagnosed with Post-traumatic stress disorder, a person must complete diagnostic testing like they PTSD Symptom Scale (PSS) that looks at re-experiencing symptom, avoidance symptoms, and hyperarousal symptoms, among other things.
What is TBI?
According to the Brain Injury Association of America, each year an estimated 1.7 million children and adults in the United States sustain a traumatic brain injury (TBI), and another 795,000 individuals sustain an acquired brain injury (ABI) from nontraumatic causes.
A traumatic brain injury occurs when an external physical force such as a car accident, fall to the ground, or blow to the head (two athletes colliding) is hard enough to cause damage to the brain. A person does not experience a TBI from having a stroke, brain tumor, or as a result of a prolonged lack of oxygen i.e. drowning victim.
The effects of TBI are different from person to person, and are also frequently life changing. Even mild TBI, which is characterized by a loss of consciousness or concussion for 30 minutes or less, can cause memory and attention problems, headaches, and mood swings.
More severe cases of TBI can cause a myriad of issues, including cognitive problems, such as memory loss; speech and language issues, such as not understanding the spoken word; and sensory difficulties, such as loss of vision or hearing.
The impact of TBI and PTSD can be overwhelming for accident survivors and their families. While each disorder has distinguishing characteristics, there is an enormous overlap and interplay among the symptoms. Navigating the legal system can be challenging for the survivors and their family. We pursue every avenue to help you get the results you deserve.
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If you or your passenger has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, experienced spinal cord Injury or traumatic brain injury as a result of the accident or if you would like more information about wrongful death or other serious injury cases click here to contact a Toral Law personal injury attorney. Or call Toral Law at 1 (800) 867-2552. Toral Law was listed by Newsweek as one of the top twenty leaders in personal injury law.