It has only been a couple of weeks since your car accident in Kentucky, but you continue to feel emotionally unstable and anxious. While you may feel tempted to disregard your feelings, your ongoing discomfort could indicate something more serious.

A traumatic event such as a car accident could trigger post-traumatic stress disorder. This side effect of your experience could present itself in many different ways.

Signs of PTSD

Allowing your mental health to continually decline could compromise your quality of life. Tasks such as focusing on work-related projects, sleeping and socializing may create stress and fear. You may notice that hobbies and activities you previously found enjoyable, lack the excitement they once had.

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, PTSD could trigger conditions including anxiety, depression and even substance abuse. Symptoms could range from vivid flashbacks and social isolation to irritability and suicidal thoughts.

Managing your mental health

Understanding how to manage your mental health will help you work toward recovery. Share your experiences and feelings with people close to you and ask for their support and encouragement. Turn your focus to aspects you can control and set realistic goals to work toward. You may consider working with a professional therapist to help you identify productive and safe ways to cope with mental distress.

Feeling comfortable driving again may require time. As you prepare to get in a vehicle again, take things slowly. Ask a family member to accompany you when you drive for the first little while. Practice driving in a parking lot or other empty space without the stress and noise of traffic. Understand which sights or sounds trigger unwanted memories so you can avoid those when driving.