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Dear diary: Keeping notes after a crash can be crucial

On Behalf of | Apr 6, 2023 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

Keeping a diary might seem like something people only do as kids. But if you have recently been in a crash, you might want to start a new one.

How can a diary help?

Whether you are filing a claim with insurance or taking legal action against a negligent party, the details of what happened and how the crash affected you will play major roles in determining things like compensation.

A diary isn’t an objective account or proof of liability. However, it can illustrate and shed light on your experiences after an accident, which can be just as important as medical test results and police reports.

When do I start keeping records?

Starting a diary or journal as soon as you are able after a crash is crucial. Even if you don’t have all the answers or remember every detail about the accident, putting what you do recollect in writing while it is still fresh can be extremely valuable.

It can also paint a picture of how severe your injuries are in the immediate aftermath, which doctors and legal representatives can consult to assess your progress (or lack thereof) in the days and weeks that follow.

What should I include in my notes?

When making your diary, focus on recording the physical, mental and personal toll a crash has taken on you. Such items you will want to make a note of include:

  • Pain levels and whether management efforts are effective
  • Sleep changes or disturbances
  • Notes about any anxiety or depression you experience
  • Symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Changes in your mood or personality
  • Days of work you have had to miss
  • How the crash and your injuries have affected your relationships
  • Doctor’s appointments
  • What you are doing to take care of yourself

Further, writing down what you remember about the accident and how you felt and continue to feel is imperative. Over time, these can change, so having these recollections to refer to can be valuable.

Sharing your diary

While a diary might be something you once hid under your pillow or stashed in a secret place, expect to share your notes with others. You could wind up sharing it with insurance agencies or your lawyer if you pursue legal action.