Being in a car accident can cause a lot of unexpected consequences. You may have a car that urgently needs repair and may have suffered other losses, but what about your health? Many people tend to focus more on the material things that they may have lost than on their health. This could be because they cannot notice any obvious injuries or because they are convinced that the accident did not impact their health in any way.
It is important to stress how essential it is to have a complete medical checkup after an accident. What’s more, if your injuries are severe or your doctor has led you to believe that you will require long-term medical care, you may have to file a claim against whoever is liable for your injuries. If so, you need to reach out as soon as possible to a car accident attorney in New York City to help you with your claim. There is no time to waste since you only have a certain period to file a claim.
The 6 Most Common Injuries That People May Not Immediately Notice After a Car Accident
Mild Traumatic Brain Injury
Car accidents are the primary reason why many people sustain brain injuries. It is not necessary for the victim to lose consciousness or to have a large and open head wound for a brain injury to be present. You may experience some or all of the following symptoms without realizing it is mild traumatic brain injury. This is why being under a doctor’s care is so important. The symptoms may include:
- Constant or frequent headaches
- Changes in behavior or personality
- Changes in eating habits
- Disruptions in sleep patterns
- Sensitivity to audio or visual stimulus
- Trouble remembering the events that lead up to the crash or the time immediately after the accident
Have your doctor give you a full evaluation after the accident to rule out the possibility of having a mild traumatic brain injury. And if the physician concludes that this injury is present, follow all their recommendations and go to all the appointments.
The adrenaline that is rushing through your body immediately after the crash may not allow you to fully comprehend what you are feeling. That is why it is so common for accident victims not to notice that they have whiplash until hours or even days after the collision. Signs that you are suffering from whiplash include:
- Stiffness or pain in the neck area
- Feeling run down or tired
- Problems with your vision
- Headaches that seem to originate in the base of the skull
- Trouble sleeping
Whiplash is much more common as a result of rear-end crashes.
If there is one type of injury that is impossible to self-diagnose it is internal bleeding. However, it is not uncommon for the force of the impact to damage organs such as the spleen or the liver, and cause internal bleeding. Yet, not taking these injuries seriously may result in catastrophic consequences, including death.
There is no need for you to wait hours or days for symptoms to signal that something is wrong. Get a medical checkup as soon as you can after the crash and be on the lookout for the following symptoms:
Your doctor or the team at the ER will inform you if you will need surgery to stop the bleeding and repair the internal organ that has been damaged.
A Herniated Disc
Even though you might have started experiencing excruciating pain several days after the accident, you may not know what is causing it or how to stop it until you receive the correct diagnosis from a healthcare provider. Herniated discs can cause pain and tingling that travels to the buttocks or legs and even down to the feet.
Depending on the extent of your injury, your doctor may recommend that you take it easy for a few days, take over-the-counter medication to address the pain, and schedule some physical therapy sessions. In other cases, you may require injections to reduce inflammation or even surgery to correct the problem. Your doctor will also have to give you guidelines on how to protect your spine in the future to avoid a recurrence.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
After such a traumatic event as a car accident, you may be feeling anxious or depressed. However, suppose you are experiencing any of the following symptoms or a combination of many of them. In that case, you may be dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder or PTSD:
- Night terrors
- Intrusive thoughts
- Changes in eating habits or sleeping patterns
- Changes in behavior or personality
- Avoiding activities related to the accident or that remind you of what happened that day
If these seem familiar, it may be time for you to schedule an appointment to receive a psychological screening and diagnosis. PTSD is not something that just goes away. Its symptoms can interfere with your ability to work, socialize, or carry out many daily activities that you had no problem doing before the accident. Also, PTSD may be with you for a long time, so psychological treatment is needed to see improvement and help you recover.
If you have an obvious broken bone, you do not have to be told twice to have it taken care of. You may need a cast or surgery to put the bone back in place. However, other types of fractures are harder to discover and are called hairline fractures. Their small size may have them go unnoticed for several days after the accident.
When you get a medical checkup after the accident, your doctor may recommend that you get an X-ray of the area to identify the fracture correctly. When a minor fracture goes untreated, it can leave you with long-term pain and a weakened bone that may not have the possibility to heal.
Get Legal Help After Being In An Accident
Whether you sustain a large and obvious injury after being in a car accident or your doctor finds a hidden injury that is not so easy to see, your health should always be your priority. Going to all doctor’s appointments, following all recommended treatments, and taking all prescribed medications are good ways to recover your health. However, taking the time to do all this may not leave you with the possibility of pursuing compensation from the party that is liable for your injuries. Once you start working with an experienced accident attorney, you can focus on recovering your health while your lawyer can fight the legal battle on your behalf.