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PTSD in Children After a Dog Bite in Illinois

 Posted on March 25, 2024 in Dog Bite Injuries

Illinois dog bite injury attorneyIt is estimated that approximately 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs in this country each year. More than half of those bitten are children. Dog bite injuries in children are often more severe than in adults because of how vulnerable their size leaves them. While much is focused on the physical injuries children suffer in dog attacks, parents and caregivers must be aware of the psychological impact the attack can have. It is estimated that almost half of children who suffer a dog bite injury will develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). If a dog has bitten your child, it is important to speak with an Illinois personal injury lawyer to find out what legal recourse you may have.

Signs of PTSD

When a child experiences a dog bite, the event can be deeply distressing, causing intense fear, pain, and feelings of helplessness. The sudden and unexpected nature of the attack can shatter a child's sense of safety and security, leaving lasting emotional scars. Moreover, the physical injuries resulting from the bite can compound the psychological trauma, serving as constant reminders of the terrifying encounter.

One of the most significant symptoms of PTSD is the development of intrusive memories, where the child may experience vivid flashbacks or nightmares of the attack. These intrusive memories can be triggered by various factors, such as seeing a dog or hearing barking, and can cause intense emotional reactions, including panic and distress. This can cause the child to become hypervigilant, constantly scanning their environment for potential threats, and may avoid situations or places that remind him or her of the traumatic event.

Children with PTSD may also exhibit avoidance behaviors, actively avoiding people, places, or activities associated with the dog bite. For example, a child who gets bitten by a dog in the park may refuse to go near any parks or outdoor areas, fearing another attack. This avoidance can significantly disrupt the child's daily life, affecting social relationships, academic performance, and overall quality of life.

Other Emotional Impacts of PTSD

A child who is struggling with PTSD from a dog bite may experience negative changes in mood, such as persistent feelings of fear, anger, or guilt. The child may also have difficulty concentrating or experiencing positive emotions. These symptoms can further impair the child's functioning and contribute to feelings of isolation and alienation from others.

It is essential for children who have experienced dog bites to receive timely and appropriate support to address their psychological needs. This may include trauma-focused therapy to help children process their traumatic experiences and develop coping skills to manage their symptoms.

Contact an Illinois Dog Bite Injury Attorney

If a dog has bitten your child, there are several damages your family may be struggling with, including medical expenses, loss of income if you have been unable to work to care for your child while they recover, and pain and suffering. If your child has developed PTSD or other psychological issues because of the bite, therapy expenses can also be included in any legal action against the party who is liable for the attack.

Call Dog Bite Injury Lawyer - Mevorah Law Offices LLC at 630-552-6860 to schedule a free consultation with a skilled Naperville, IL, dog bite lawyer. We operate on a contingency fee basis, so you will not be charged unless we win your case.

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Contact an Illinois Dog Bite Attorney

If you have suffered a dog bite injury, our personal injury lawyers can help you determine the actual value of the damages you have suffered, and we will work to help you recover the compensation you deserve. Call us at 630-552-6860 or fill out the form below to arrange a free consultation.

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