Getting back behind the wheel after an accident
Being involved in a car accident is one of the most traumatic experiences that could happen to an individual. Most people dread getting back behind the wheel after a crash. Even if you weren’t injured, the accident could still cause fear and trauma. If you are scared of driving after a crash, below are tips to help you regain your confidence on the road.
1. Talk about your feelings
You may be experiencing traumatic stress symptoms after the accident. Negative emotions like anxiety, stress, and fear are common after an accident. However, it’s not healthy for you to keep these feelings bottled up inside. If you are uncomfortable opening up to your friends and family, consider seeking professional help. Speaking to a psychologist is the best way to walk through your emotions.
2. Get a friend to drive with you
Getting back on the road after a traumatic accident is not easy. However, you can get a friend or family member to drive with you. Having someone else in the car will make you feel safer and more confident. They can hop behind the wheel if you start to feel overwhelmed and unable to continue driving. Until you are confident to drive alone, you should always have another person drive with you.
3. Start slow
Don’t rush onto the freeway immediately after an accident. Start slowly by driving on less busy roads around your neighborhood. This is the best way to prepare yourself for the open road. You can also take daily short drives to help you regain your confidence.
4. Take defensive driving classes
Even if you’ve been driving for many years, it’s advisable to go back to driving school after an accident. Look for a defensive driving course in your city. This will help you regain confidence by learning how to retain control when driving. There are also other skills taught in defensive driving classes that will help you sharpen your driving skills.
5. Go back to the scene of the accident
Most people try to avoid the scene of the accident to protect themselves from unpleasant memories. The more you avoid your crash site, the worse your anxiety may become. Instead of changing your route, try to visit the crash site. Sometimes, the best way to get over our fears is to face them.
6. Take a break
After a car crash, you may feel scared and shaken. It will take time before you regain your confidence and get back on the road. Don’t be pressured to start driving immediately. Take some time off and focus on doing the things that you like. You should also spend some time with your family. This will not only help you heal your physical injuries, it’s also good for mental and emotional recovery.
It’s also important to avoid blaming yourself for the crash or pushing yourself too hard. If you’re unable to take some time off work, you could get someone to drive you to work or take the bus for a few days.
What to do if you’ve been traumatized in a car crash
According to Paul Hammack, a car accident lawyer in Greenville, South Carolina, you should seek medical attention for even minor injuries after an accident because it will create medical records that will strengthen a lawsuit. If you believe seeing a therapist or psychologist will help you recover, don’t hesitate to make an appointment. Just be sure to keep the invoice for your records.
Your personal injury lawyer will advise you on what your options are depending on the circumstances of your case. They will also ensure that you are compensated for your injuries and damages.