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Car accidents may cause PTSD in young children

Georgia car accidents are the leading cause of serious injury and death to children in our state who are between the ages of 5 and 19. A car accident is a scary event for any child to experience. A recent study of child car accident victims found that more than one-third of children who are involved in car accidents suffer symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) six weeks after the accident.
 
The study was conducted by researchers at Royal United Hospital in Great Britain. The scientists compared incidence of PTSD in children involved in highway traffic accidents and in children who suffered sports injuries. The children involved in the study were between the ages of 5 and 19.
 
Of the 119 accident victims who participated in the study, 34.5% showed signs of PTSD. The severity of the PTSD was not correlated with the severity of the accident or with the severity of the injuries sustained by the child, but PTSD was influenced by the child’s perception of what happened. However, girls were more likely to suffer from PTSD than boys.
 
PTSD is a serious condition. Children suffering from PTSD require psychological treatment to help them get back to their normal lives.
 
Signs of PTSD in children:
 
•    Loss of interest in normal activities
•    Headaches, stomach aches or other physical symptoms
•    Sudden and extreme emotional outbursts
•    Difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep
•    Irritability
•    Difficulty concentrating
•    Regression (behaving like a younger child; thumb sucking, bed wetting, clinginess, etc.)
•    Increased alertness to environment
•    Jitteriness
•    Withdrawing from family or friends
•    Worry about death
•    Re-experiencing the event through dramatic play, dreams, speech, or other means.
 
The symptoms can last from months to years. Psychological treatment is very important for helping a child get back to normal.
 
If your child is suffering PTSD after an accident, their care and treatment should be covered by the insurance company. To learn more, contact Atlanta accident attorney Shane Smith at 770-HURT-999. 
 
When you call The Law Offices of Shane Smith, be sure to ask for your free copy of our book “10 Mistakes that Can Ruin Your Georgia Wreck Case.”


Shane Smith
Advocate for the Seriously Injured in Georgia