Personal Injury: Addressing the Psychological Toll
Behind even the toughest of exteriors, the mind remains a fragile and complex thing. It’s no secret that a physical injury or disorder can take a huge toll on the human psyche, for professional athletes and office executives alike. When a physical impairment becomes a legal matter, the psychological ramifications also deserve attention.
Wherever physical pain or discomfort threatens a person’s ability to live fully, psychological pain is almost certain to follow. As those in the medical and legal professions become more familiar with disorders like fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome, the full toll taken on the mind is also becoming clearer.
And it’s clear to see how a long absence from work, for example, could cause trouble in more than one facet of life. If the pain arises as part of a traumatic event like a car accident, it can lead to post-traumatic stress disorder. Taken together, the individual may need to take time off work initially to recover. They may also feel overwhelmed by the legal proceedings ahead and the potential for a lost compensation claim.
Accusations of exaggerating symptoms or faking an injury inevitably arise, from the insurance company, co-workers and supervisors and even friends. When rushing back to work prematurely, frustration sets in, as previously simple tasks like sitting at a computer become too much.
They can struggle to come to terms with a long and challenging road to recovery ahead – and the possibility of a lifetime of difficulties. Depression sets in as the individual needs to take more time off work and continue to fight to get the disability payments owed to them. At home, losing their status as breadwinner and the source of stability in the family only worsens depression and causes relationship rifts for the individual.
Unfortunately these kinds of problems are all too common for people suffering from physical pain. With an experienced and compassionate lawyer, one who will simplify and expertly manage the litigation process, the client can focus on recovery. A personal injury and disability lawyer should also connect their client with experts in psychology and psychiatry, as a means of both recovery and establishing a comprehensive claim.