Trauma Induced Anxiety and Steps to Manage it

Most people first think of physical damage that can be done after an accident of course. Physical damages are immediately assessed. But often times there is a type of damage done that cannot be seen – A type of emotional damage or trauma. Just like physical damage, emotional damage cannot be neglected.

According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, “Following an accident, many people can experience emotional distress. It’s normal that during the healing process, you may begin to notice signs of increased stress such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), anxiety, depression, anguish, fearfulness, issues with sleep, reoccurring nightmares about the crash and more. These intense emotions can lead to avoidance. Some may avoid having to drive again by avoiding going to work, appointments, events, school, etc. due to fear of getting into another accident. When symptoms start getting in the way of day to day functioning it may be a sign to take action.”

Ways to cope with trauma induced anxiety

There are specific ways you can and should take action to cope with the anxiety that may come along after trauma. 

Talk to a doctor or specialist

   Talking with someone who specializes in this area is the most important. They can help you with the proper help that you may need. 

Learn about trauma and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

   Learning about the ways these impact individuals can help you recognize them in yourself. This can also show you that you’re not alone in feeling this way. There are many resources out there that can help immensely on ways to cope. 

Learn how to manage this heightened anxiety

   There are many ways to manage PTSD, and anxiety caused by trauma. You have to find ways to cope that works for you such as:

  • Mindfulness
  • Breathing techniques
  • Exercise
  • Journaling

Stay connected and talk to someone

It’s important you hold your family and friends close during this time. Stay connected and reach out to that support system. Talking to someone about what you’re going through can be a part of the healing. 

Therapy, support groups or even just reaching out to someone in your close circle are great choices.

Take care of yourself

Focus on taking care of your individual needs. Eat right, get plenty of sleep, incorporate movement in your day, stay hydrated. 

During this time you should be patient with yourself. Focus on things that will make you feel as good as possible or just things that you love to do to get back on the right track.

Here are two resources to help you look deeper into finding the help or treatment you may need:

National Institute of Mental Health

Anxiety and Depression Association of America

A list of the most common mental and emotional injuries caused by car accidents: