When you get into an accident, the very first thing that you usually worry about is your physical safety. While this is entirely understandable because it’s not easy to be in an accident, know that you also need to consider the trauma you might feel after the accident. Your mental wellness after an accident is as important as your physical well-being.
People react differently to stress. Some people can quickly recover from a bad accident; others could take a long time before they could move on from even the most minor accident. If you find yourself lost, confused, or traumatized after a bad road mishap, here are some things you can do.
Verbalize your fears
You need to talk to your family, friends, or anyone you trust about the whole experience. You might want to share your fears, anxieties, and trauma to get it out of your system. If you continue to dwell on such unpleasant thoughts, it’s easy to get drowned in them. If you let it sit at the corner of your mind, chances are, it will grow and occupy most of your thoughts. It won’t take long until your thoughts get preoccupied with it.
Sharing is a form of therapy wherein you get to recount your experience, rationalize it, and process it to keep them from seeping into your consciousness. Getting it out of your system also helps empty negative thoughts and feelings about the accident. Before you share, you might have difficulty recalling it as it’s unpleasant. However, once a friend listens to your story, they can help you make sense of it and see it in a different light.
According to www.ltbaker.com, if you go over the tiny details of the accident, you’ll realize that it’s not something that can hurt you again. It all happened in the past, and you survived it. Talking it out is like emptying your mind and throwing all the bad stuff away. You can realize that it’s no longer your reality. You can do something to prevent it from happening again.
Physical activities like exercising are proven to improve one’s mood. It also helps address negative moods while keeping depression and anxiety from worsening. By being active, you’re altering that part of your brain responsible for regulating pressure and stress. It also improves your brain’s sensitivity to hormones like norepinephrine and serotonin. These two hormones are known for relieving depression.
By a simple exercise, you can improve endorphin production, helping your body produce positive feelings while reducing pain. Also, if you continue to keep yourself active, you shift your focus into physical activity rather than your fears and anxiety.
Talk to a healthcare specialist
Before anything else, you need to accept that these negative and anxious thoughts are not helping you anymore. Apart from that, you need to accept that it’s neither wrong nor shameful to get professional help. An expert knows how to deal with scenarios like this, so you can experience immediate relief.
If you think and feel that talking to a friend is not enough, book an appointment to speak with a doctor. It could be a medical doctor for the physical manifestations of stress or a psychiatrist to help you deal with the mental anguish you’re experiencing. Either way, don’t hesitate to call for professional help when necessary. There’s no shame in admitting that you need help.
Reestablish your old hobbies and routines
The accident may have left you with an overwhelming feeling that keeps you off track. When this happens, you might lose track of your routine and other activities you do regularly. Things would start to feel unfamiliar, which is why your anxiety could worsen.
In this case, you can try rebuilding your routine slowly. Bring back things to where they were before by reestablishing old hobbies. If before the accident you enjoyed jogging and other outdoor activities, slowly incorporate these fun activities into your day-to-day activities.
However, note that recovering from a car accident trauma depends on the person’s coping mechanism. You might feel okay today after a few weeks of struggling. And suddenly, you’ll wake up tomorrow, going back to the same old vicious cycle of guilt and anxiety. This is perfectly normal. It’s not a reason to panic. If this happens, do something familiar to shift your focus. Slowly, you’ll see yourself getting over the anxiety and panic phases.
Practice defensive driving
Getting back to driving after an accident could be a real challenge. However, know that you can overcome this fear as well. You may start slowly, but in time, your pace will just pick up in time. So, start by being more conscious about your driving environment. Wear your seatbelt, keep focused while driving, and be in tip-top shape when you drive. This means you have to sleep right, rest well, and be clear-headed as you drive. This will keep your focus on the road.
Avoid calling or texting while you’re on the road. Never drink and drive. Remind everyone riding your vehicle to always wear their seatbelts. And always observe traffic rules. These simple acts can help you control your environment. Yes, you may not be able to control the demeanor of other drivers, but you can most definitely control yours. With this simple change, you can be more on top of the whole driving experience.
It’s normal to feel anxious and traumatized after a significant accident. It’s also normal to feel lost when you just recovered from your physical and psychological injuries. Give yourself time and never beat yourself up. Don’t let these things defeat you, either.
You can reclaim your peace of mind by taking things one at a time. You need to help yourself get over it. If not, you can tap on your family and friends for support. You can also seek the help of professionals to deal with your anxious thoughts. Go for the things that you believe could support you. Soon, you’ll be surprised to wake up totally healed from all the trauma.