The aftermath of a car accident can be a lonely experience. The road to recovery can be long. Many car accident victims might have to miss time from work in order to heal. This break to a person’s normal routine can be socially isolating. Furthermore, if you have had to find new work after a car accident because you are no longer able to work your former job, you may be struggling with major lifestyle changes. Car accidents can leave victims suffering from whiplash, traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, and a range of other injuries. However, the psychological impact of a car accident can also be serious. Victims can suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, which can affect their ability to engage in regular life activities. The isolation victims might experience after a crash can also contribute to the epidemic of loneliness.
The U.S. Surgeon General recently spoke to QZ about the epidemic of loneliness affecting individuals across America. Loneliness can impact all aspects of your health. It has been cited as contributing to obesity, heart disease, anxiety, depression, addiction, and other illnesses. As scientists have studied conditions like obesity, addiction, anxiety, and depression, some have started to consider the common thread across these illnesses. The common thread many doctors have found is loneliness.
Victims of car accidents might be especially prone to suffer loneliness. A serious personal injury can reconfigure your entire life and make it difficult to maintain regular social connections. So, what can personal injury victims do to prevent loneliness and its collateral effects?
According to NAMI, one way to help fight loneliness, especially when you are struggling, is to use the EASE method. With the ease method, you can:
- Extend: Reach out to others in small ways. Volunteer, sign up for a class, join a support group, or even just sit at a café surrounded by other people.
- Action: Take action and take steps toward doing things you enjoy that will put you around other people. If you enjoy painting, take an art class, or join a local volunteer organization. Find ways to both meet your goals while also being around other people.
- Selection: Meet people with similar interests by putting yourself around them. If food access issues are important to you, you might volunteer at a community garden. If environmental causes matter, you might volunteer with environmental organizations. While the aftermath of a personal injury might impact your mobility, consider speaking to your rehabilitation team about ways you can start moving again.
- Expect: Open yourself to positive experiences. The loneliness cycle can lead to negative feelings that feed more negative feelings. Try to stay positive and look at the small victories.
The recovery process following a personal injury can be long and challenging. Your life might have been changed in many ways, and it is essential that you have a positive support system working on your side. The Law Offices of Robert Gregg are personal injury lawyers in Dallas, Texas who work with individuals and families who are struggling to navigate the long road to recovery after a car accident. Our firm can do more than connect you with resources—we may be able to help you and your family get the recovery you may deserve after a crash to support you as you heal.