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Psychological trauma and healing from physical injury

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Posted on August 24, 2021

A sudden and life-changing injury can impact people’s emotional health in serious ways. If they neglect to treat their psychological trauma or do not recognize its influence on their well-being, their physical recovery may take longer.

Because of the correlation between psychological trauma and physical injury, addressing both factors simultaneously may help injury victims to have a more complete recovery.

Causes of psychological trauma

Even minor injuries can have detrimental effects on a person’s life. For example, they may need to take time away from their career to heal. They may experience feelings of guilt, shame or incompetency. They may need to temporarily rely on others to help them with tasks that they used to do alone. These feelings only increase for victims of injuries that cause permanent disability.

Even though many people associate psychological trauma with ongoing traumatic events such as exposure to violence or suffering a chronic illness, other events can trigger similar emotions. According to HelpGuide, one-time events can cause psychological trauma such as an unexpected accident or injury.

Symptoms of psychological trauma

Because physical injuries are often more noticeable and painful than any psychological symptoms of illness, many people overlook their emotional health entirely. According to WebMD, some symptoms of psychological trauma may include the following:

  • Persistent memories of a traumatic event
  • Anxiety
  • Mood swings
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Insomnia
  • Gastrointestinal issues

Recognizing the dangers of untreated psychological trauma may encourage victims to seek help immediately. With a well-rounded treatment plan that addresses all areas impacted by an injury, victims may effectively expedite their physical recovery while also learning productive ways to manage emotional triggers.