You know that heart-pumping, quick-thinking, adrenaline-fueled feeling you get when you sense danger or feel threatened? That same feeling arises after experiencing a traumatic event, such as a motor vehicle accident. While this organic defense mechanism can protect you in a dangerous situation, it can also mask the severity of injuries after a collision. It's why people report feeling fine immediately after a collision or other accident, but begin to feel pain two or three days later.
Below we outline some of the most common injuries caused by car accidents.
Head and Neck Injuries
Traumatic Brain Injury
A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is an acute event that affects the brain, abruptly changing a person's life. TBIs affect an injured person's cognitive, physical, behavioral and intellectual abilities. No two traumatic brain injuries are alike, and recovery can be a slow, arduous and often frustrating process. TBIs range from mild to severe.
A concussion is a mild traumatic brain injury caused by a blow to the head. Concussion symptoms can mirror those of more severe traumatic brain injuries, like confusion and memory loss, as well as speech, vision and balance impairments.
Whiplash is one of the most frequently experienced car accident neck injuries. It is caused by an abrupt forward and/or backward movement of the head and neck. Symptoms of whiplash include neck pain and stiffness, headaches, dizziness and inability to sleep.
Chest and Back Injuries
Broken or fractured ribs are painful and can hurt with every breath. This chest injury typically occurs from the impact of the chest hitting the steering wheel, or from the life-saving restraint of the seatbelt. Symptoms of broken or fractured ribs include chest pain when coughing, laughing or taking deep breaths, localized pain where the individual rib is fractured/broken and upper body pain during movement.
Damage to the chest and sternum during a car collision can result in serious injuries to your heart and lungs, oftentimes mimicking the symptoms of a heart attack. Chest pain should always be checked out by a medical professional as soon as symptoms are felt. Injury to the chest can also affect the liver, spleen and kidneys.
Herniated discs can occur in the upper (cervical) spine and in the lower (lumbar) spine. A herniated disc is a rupture of the spine's vertebrae, causing back pain, and numbness or weakness in the arms and legs.
Hands, Arms and Legs
Common injuries to the upper and lower body extremities include sprains, strains and fractures, as well as lacerations and bruising. Large areas of bruising may indicate internal bleeding and require immediate medical attention.
Injury Symptoms May Not Be Immediate. Don't Delay Medical Attention After an Accident.
Car accidents are a pain in the neck … and spine, arms and chest. More than 2.35 million people in the United States are left injured or disabled from motor vehicle accidents. As a no-fault state, Florida drivers, passengers and pedestrians can – and should – see a doctor within 14 days from the date of an accident.
If you've been injured in a car accident due to another driver's negligence, you could be eligible to receive financial compensation for your injuries, lost wages and pain and suffering. At SKG, we've represented thousands of clients injured in car accidents and have obtained settlements to help them get their lives back on track. Schedule your free, no-risk consultation by contacting us online or call (800) 350-FIRM today.