If you have survived a vicious dog attack, you know just how traumatic the experience can be. After all, not only do you have the stress that comes with the initial attack, but you also may experience extreme anxiety from medical procedures, rehabilitation and even lost work.
According to the Mayo Clinic, post-traumatic stress disorder is a potentially serious mental health condition individuals develop after going through a terrifying or otherwise traumatic event. It is important to note that you do not have to be the victim of a dog attack to have PTSD. Indeed, simply witnessing an attack on another person may cause you to develop the condition.
Identifying your symptoms
The first step in coping with bite-related PTSD is identifying your symptoms. Be sure to visit your doctor or a psychologist for a diagnosis if you have one or more of the following:
- Constant memories of the attack long after it is over
- Flashbacks to the attack or nightmares about it
- Severe anxiety or fear that is either rational or irrational
- Avoidance of situations that remind you of the attack
- Negative changes in your mood or sleep patterns
Managing your condition
If you have PTSD, it is important to understand you may not be able to cope with the condition without some professional help. That is, you may need therapy to help you move past the attack. In addition to teaching you coping strategies, a therapist may recommend medication or refer you to other specialists.
Deep breathing, meditation and mindfulness may also be useful. Ultimately, though, because your life may never be the same again, it is critical to pursue financial compensation to give you the resources you need to access top-level mental health care.