Scientists, scholars, philosophers and curious individuals have been studying human psychological injuries for centuries. As the public becomes more aware of how mental health affects physical and financial well being, the magnitude of psychological injuries within the legal context is growing considerably.
A psychological injury is an injury to a victim’s psyche or mind. Unlike traumatic brain injuries, where there is an injury to the brain tissue, psychological injuries can develop without physical trauma. For example, witnessing a motorcycle accident or motor vehicle accident in which a loved one is seriously injured or killed can cause psychological injuries. Sometimes the trauma of being involved in a serious accident triggers psychological damage – losing a limb, becoming paralyzed, suffering severe burn injuries or even simply fearing for your own life can cause psychological damage that could take years to heal.
Following a traumatic event, victims may experience a broad range of physical and emotional symptoms, which can include:
- Anger, irritability, mood swings
- Guilt, shame, self-blame
- Sadness or hopelessness
- Confusion and poor concentration
- Anxiety and fear
- Insomnia or nightmares
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
The most common form of psychological injury is post-traumatic stress disorder ("PTSD”). PTSD can occur after you have seen or experienced a traumatic event that involved a feeling of helplessness or fear and the threat of injury or death; it is an anxiety disorder that disturbs your day-to-day activities. Most people associate PTSD with veterans who return home from war. However, PTSD can affect those who personally experience a catastrophe or witness it. Symptoms include:
- Nightmares and insomnia
- Strong, uncomfortable reactions to situations that remind you of the event
- Emotional numbing
- Severe depression
- Suicidal thoughts
- Avoidance of places, people or thoughts that remind you of the event
- Difficulty concentrating
- Irritability or uncontrolled anger
- Physical symptoms, such as headache or tachycardia
Attorneys for insurance companies and other liable parties will view your psychological injuries with skepticism and attack the genuine nature of your claims. To put it bluntly, they may claim your psychological injuries are trivial, easily fixed with rest and medication, not as severe as alleged or even faked. We are aggressive trial lawyers who are compassionate toward your condition, but tough on the opposition.