Why Accident Victims Don’t Feel at Home in Their Bodies

Personal Injury Blog

In any accident, survivors are vulnerable to serious injuries of all types. There are physical injuries that accident victims sustain, and there are the emotional damages they experience. One of the mental injuries caused by physical trauma is dissociation, resulting in the survivor feeling as though he or she is not at home in his/her body.

Survivors feel as though they are leaving their bodies, spaced out from their current situation. Understanding why this happens can help victims cope with the symptoms, working to overcome feelings of depersonalization and derealization.

If you need practical, concrete ways to deal with the symptoms of post-traumatic stress, read "9 Ways to Deal with the Daily Effects of PTSD" today.

Understanding Depersonalization

Depersonalization is often described and referred to as an out-of-body experience. This means that the individual views themselves from a different perspective, seeing their own body from above. It creates an image that the accident isn’t happening to them. It is associated with incidents when individuals are involved in catastrophic events.

What is Derealization?

While derealization is not an out-of-body experience, it still gives the victim the feeling that they are just dreaming. It becomes easy to feel as though the incident isn’t occurring. Victims don’t believe it’s happening. It is also associated with decreased emotional intensity. Both derealization and depersonalization is a part of dissociation: a disconnection from thoughts, feelings, actions, and memories.

How Long Does Dissociation Last?

The duration of dissociation varies depending on the severity of the incident. For some, dissociation is as common as highway hypnosis when they daydream while driving. Have you ever drove on the highway for an extended period of time, but you can’t remember driving past various areas? This is highway hypnosis. Moments like this can last only a few moments. In other situations such as an accident, people drift in and out of dissociation for years, impacting their ability to function.

Long-Term Impact

Severe disassociation causes stress, detachment, depression, or even an unclear sense of identity. This can impact a person’s work life, relationships, friendships, and more. In some cases, dissociation can lead to suicidal thoughts and other mental health issues. It’s important to seek treatment as soon as possible.

Unfortunately, trauma is a common result of experiencing an accident. Victims shouldn’t have to suffer from an often debilitating disorder because of someone else’s negligence. Our firm works to help clients seek justice. Victims deserve compensation to help with the resources they need to cope with an accident. We’re here to help from start to finish.

HHR helps accident victims get back on their feet. Give us a call to learn what you'll need to put your life back together.