Auto accidents are a source of stress for all the people involved. One must deal with insurance companies, automobile repair facilities, attorneys (if a lawsuit is involved) and in some cases, a doctor or hospital.
Auto accident is one of the top 5 leading causes of injury to people year after year. You are incredibly lucky if you walk away from such an incident without any injury, but what if you THINK you’re not hurt, only to find out days later you are? This can happen, as some injuries that occur during an auto accident don’t begin showing symptoms until hours or even days later. It is important to know the delayed signs of a serious injury so that you can seek immediate medical treatment as soon as the symptoms begin.
Here is a list of some of the most common injuries whose symptoms may be delayed and what to look for:
Whiplash – Whiplash is an incredibly common injury suffered by those who have been in an auto accident, especially those hit from behind. It is an injury that affects the soft tissues in the neck and the symptoms are usually delayed. These can include headaches, stiffness in the neck, and even extreme dizziness. If these symptoms begin to appear following an auto injury it is important to seek treatment immediately, so the condition does not worsen.
Concussion – A concussion is an injury that occurs when the brains suffers serious trauma. An actual impact to the head does not have to occur and the brain can shift inside the skull without striking anything at all. The symptoms of concussion are often delayed and can be severe and worsen over time if not treated. Some of these include dizziness, fatigue, irritability, inability to recall things, slurred speech, and even a sensitivity to noise or bright light. Any of these symptoms should not be ignored and medical treatment should be sought quickly.
Lower back injuries – Another area of the body that can suffer from delayed symptoms following an auto accident is the lower back. One may begin feeling pain, stiffness and even develop difficulty walking due to a lower back injury and while the injury itself may not be severe, it is still important to seek medical attention if any of these symptoms appear.
Psychological effects – One result of an auto accident that many fail to consider is the psychological impact an auto accident can have on those involved. The crash may have been severely jarring to a person’s psyche and can cause delayed symptoms similar to PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder). This condition can result in anxiety, sleeplessness, inability to drive a car, and more. While not a PHYSICAL injury, this is still considered an injury and should not be taken lightly. Sometimes, such an injury can require years of therapy to help the patient overcome some or all the effects.
Even if you don’t believe the injury to be severe, if you begin suffering symptoms following an auto accident you should seek medical attention immediately. In addition, as some treatments can become extremely expensive and the possibility exists that you may suffer lingering symptoms throughout your life, contacting an attorney is also advised. This will help ensure you receive the maximum compensation owed you to help cover medical bills, lost wages, and the stress suffered following such an incident.