For victims of serious car accidents in Maryland, the obvious physical trauma may appear as the most alarming repercussion. However, as healing begins, victims may start to recognize signs of emotional trauma too.
The ongoing emotional distress that many people experience after a car accident can create unrest, anxiety and fear. These persistent feelings may prevent people from feeling comfortable getting into a vehicle again for a long time.
Managing emotional triggers
Sights, sounds and even smells can trigger memories of traumatic situations. For car accident victims, learning to recognize what their triggers are can help them find solutions to effectively process challenging emotions and continue to heal. This may require the help of a professional therapist.
Another way people can facilitate effective emotional processing is through prioritizing self-care. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, some self-care methods include the following:
- Participating in social activities
- Eating a well-balanced diet
- Getting enough rest
- Exercising as much as physical recovery allows
Practicing without pressure
It takes time for car accident victims to work up the courage to drive again. For a while, they may even struggle with the thought of getting into a vehicle even if they do not need to drive. According to In News Weekly, people should never force themselves to drive before they feel ready.
People can set personal goals that outline their desired progression to feel comfortable driving again. For example, they may make a goal to ride as a passenger. From there, they may spend an afternoon sitting behind the wheel and just experiencing what it feels like to be in that position again. Then, they may want to start practicing in a low-traffic area and with the accompaniment of someone they trust. Eventually, people can find the confidence to drive again if they take things slowly and minimize pressure.