Serious Personal Injuries and Your Mental Health

The Delaware personal injury attorneys at Silverman, McDonald & Friedman understand all the aspects of a personal injury case. We work with clients out of our Newark, Seaford, Wilmington, and Newark offices.

Any type of injury from an accident – whether a car accident, medical mistake, or slip and fall – involves physical pain and a recovery period. However, one thing many people may not take into account when considering the extent of their injuries is their mental health. It’s not uncommon to experience psychological trauma after an accident as well, especially if you experienced serious injury.

Research shows that, after a serious injury, victims of accidents are much more prone to psychological issues like depression and anxiety. One study out of the United Kingdom found “unintentional injuries have a significant long-term health impact in working age adults. Depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder are common post-injury.” Signs of mental health issues post-injury can manifest at any time – immediately after an accident or even months later.

Common emotional and mental health injuries after an accident can include:

  • Panic attacks, anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder or insomnia
  • Temporary or permanent physical pain
  • Loss of consortium (inability to continue having a physical relationship with your partner)
  • Emotional or psychological impact affecting your quality of life

Can I recover compensation for mental health injuries?

Yes, you can. In a personal injury case, you are permitted to seek financial compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. This means you are entitled to compensation for your emotional or psychological injuries in addition to your physical injuries.

However, emotional damage can be much more difficult to quantify than physical injuries. After an accident, people rarely seek treatment for (or realize they have) psychological injury. Further, this trauma can be difficult to diagnose, as well as establishing a valid connection between the accident and the mental injury. As a result, these types of injuries are difficult to prove – but certainly not impossible.

One of the key pieces to a successful claim is seeking prompt medical attention after any accident, like a car crash. Many physical injuries don’t show up immediately either, so it’s important to see a doctor for a thorough examination as well as documentation for later. Your doctor can give you guidance regarding taking care of your mental health as well.

Typically, a judge or jury determines the fair amount of pain and emotional suffering in a personal injury case. They’ll consider factors like the severity of your injuries, the level of your pain, how your injuries have affected your personal life and career prospects, and whether you will need ongoing therapy.

This is why it’s so important to have extensive documentation of both your physical and mental injuries – as well as have aggressive and experienced legal counsel by your side.

If you or a loved one were injured in an accident, it’s important you secure all the compensation to which you’re entitled. Talk to Silverman, McDonald & Friedman today. Call us at 302-888-2900 or fill out our contact form to schedule an appointment. We have offices in Wilmington, Newark, Seaford, and Newark.