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Not all car accident injuries exhibit physical symptoms

When most people think of car accident injury symptoms, they think of physical ones, such as neck pain, headaches and low back stiffness. However, some injuries also exhibit mental or psychological symptoms.

Traumatic brain injuries have both physical and mental symptoms. Post-traumatic stress disorder is another common result of crashes that show up as mental symptoms.

Traumatic brain injuries

According to KTAR News, brain injuries are very common when there is a motor vehicle crash. They vary from mild to severe, and a severe TBI has long-lasting consequences. A TBI has physical symptoms, such as headaches, but it may also cause mental and emotional symptoms, especially in more severe cases.

Some signs include personality changes, depression, behavioral changes, impaired memory, mood changes, agitation, aggressiveness and trouble concentrating. If someone lost consciousness after a crash, he or she probably has a brain injury and should seek medical care right away.


As with other types of accidents, a car crash, even a minor one, can be a traumatic event. It is not uncommon for accident victims to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder. According to the Mayo Clinic, symptoms of PTSD generally do not appear until at least one month after the accident. Symptoms fall into four main categories:

  • Negative changes in mood and thoughts
  • Intrusive memories
  • Changes in emotional and physical reactions
  • Avoidance

Although it is common for crash victims to experience some changes, such as depression or trouble sleeping, after the accident, PTSD is a diagnosis when the symptoms remain for more than a month and do not decrease in intensity. If someone does not seek help for PTSD, it may increase the risk of other issues such as eating disorders, anxiety, depression, alcohol abuse and suicidal thoughts.

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