Getting injured is not typically something that you plan for. One day…it just happens. Whether the injury was the result of a workplace accident, slip and fall, or motor vehicle collision, those who suffer significant injuries have a long road ahead of them toward recovery.
Most would assume that the only thing they have to be worried about is recovering from the physical injuries they’ve sustained. While this is partially true, there are other aspects of being injured that no one thinks about or plans for until they’re in the midst of the mayhem – the emotional and financial aspects.
The Emotional Effects of an Accident
When someone has been significantly injured, it can have a significant impact on them emotionally. Someone who is injured obviously can’t carry on with life in the manner that they’re used to. In more severe instances, the individual may even be incapable of ever living life the way they did before the accident. For example, nerve damage could prevent someone from being able to return to work, or complete simple day-to-day tasks without complications. Injuries can ultimately change the way an individual thinks and feels about themselves and the quality of their life. Periods of anxiety, fear, self-doubt, and more can lead to a psychological breakdown creating an environment for depression to sink in.
Emotional aspects of an accident are often overlooked by those suffering from injuries. Their immediate attention is geared towards their physical well-being and recovery. However, as their wounds begin to heal, they’re often left with the emotional side of things, which leaves them feeling helpless, and in many cases depressed. When an individual is not fully aware of how to deal with these emotions, they often find ways to mask those feelings. Unfortunately that can lead to the dependency of medications, drugs, and alcohol.
What many individuals assume is that because medication has been prescribed that it is safe for consumption. This is true in a sense. Medications are taken through a rigorous approval process by the FDA before they can be prescribed and consumed by the general public. However, when a doctor prescribes medication, they do so with strict guidelines on how much should be taken and when. When patients don’t comply with those instructions, they run the risk of affecting their health – including the potential for becoming addicted to their prescribed medication.
How does one become addicted to opiates? Pain medication essentially makes the pain go away. When the victim is no longer experiencing pain, their mental state of being often subsides. However, once those medications wear off, it sends them right back into emotional distress and physical pain. So to remedy that, they take more medication and become dependent upon it to provide them with immediate (yet temporary) relief.
When prescription medications wear off or are no longer necessary, the emotional aspects of the injuries have still be unresolved. The feeling of not being able to return to work, do certain physical activities, or even look the same (in instances where scarring changes the appearance), can cause some to rely on illegal drugs and alcohol to mask their emotions.
Getting Help and Turning Things Around
It can be hard to get past the physical and emotional pain of an accident. The injuries you’ve sustained, the scars it may have left behind, and even the thought of the cause of the accident itself can be enough to drive a person to the edge. Be that as it may, it is imperative for those who have suffered injuries to get help before things get worse. Below are two forms of help that can assist you in getting your life back on track:
- Reach Out to a Therapist – An accident of any kind can be psychologically damaging. Some people experience post traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, depression, and even chronic stress. Talking with a therapist about these emotions is important to prevent the potential for substance abuse and/or addiction. A therapist can assist you in sorting through your emotions and helping you to find the silver lining to getting your life back in order. For those who have already developed a dependency to medication or other substances, an addiction therapist is still beneficial for helping you to kick your habit before things get worse.
- Seek Legal Counsel – Many individuals are unsure of when to contact a personal injury lawyer. However, when you’ve sustained significant injuries that have altered your quality of life or caused a great deal of emotional distress, it is beneficial to consult with a legal representative to find out what your rights are. Many attorneys do not charge for a consultation so there is no risk in reaching out to see how they can help. A personal injury attorney will ultimately review your case and help you in determining if you can receive financial compensation for your injuries and pain and suffering.
If you or someone you know has recently suffered a significant injury as a result of any form of accident knowing what to do can make a huge difference on their road to recovery. Allowing the psychological trauma of their injuries and the accident to sink in can cause unsettling feelings about life to develop. In turn, this can lead to dependency on negative crutches like painkillers, alcohol, and drugs.
It is best to reach out to professionals to help both your physical, psychological, and financial burdens so that you can work towards getting your life back on track. If you haven’t done so already, consider consulting with a personal injury lawyer to assist with financial compensation as well as a therapist to help you sort through your emotions. In time, you will see a significant improvement in your recovery process and your outlook on life.
- Futures of Palm Beach, The Politics of Addiction, 2015. http://www.futuresofpalmbeach.com/addictions/politics-addiction/
- The Berlin Daily Sun, Jen Buteau, Innocent Victims of Opiate Addiction, February 9, 2015. http://www.berlindailysun.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=52656:jen-buteau-collateral-damage&catid=73&Itemid=428
- American Society of Addiction Medicine, Pain and Addiction, 2015. http://www.asam.org/research-treatment/pain-and-addiction
- Helpguide.org, Emotional and Psychological Trauma, 2015. http://www.helpguide.org/articles/ptsd-trauma/emotional-and-psychological-trauma.htm
This article is from Jenna Brown. Jenna is a freelance blogger who is mainly focused on business innovation and breaking stories in business. Jenna has been blogging since college where she studied marketing and has merged her love of keying stories into copy writing work as well as plenty of reading and writing for fun! Find and follow on her new Twitter here! Also seen here.