In the event of a car accident, whether it’s minor or serious, the occupants of the involved vehicles are likely to sustain injuries. While the severity depends on a number of factors, including the type of accident, the speed at which the accident occurred, and the health and age of those involved, there are bound to be some similar symptoms across the board. This is because of what the human body is generally subjected to during the impact.
In order to recover fully from a crash, it’s important to be aware of all your symptoms – so your doctor can accurately diagnose you and recommend a course of treatment. While some will be noticeable immediately following the accident, others could take time to develop. The best way to understand why you’re experiencing the symptoms you are is to recognize what your body went through during and right after the collision.
What Happens to the Body During a Car Accident?
Auto collisions happen in less than a second. In the time that the entire event takes place, the body can undergo dramatic changes. When a car is traveling forward, the occupants inside are moving at the same speed as the vehicle. When impact occurs and the vehicle suddenly stops, the body continues to move at the same speed as before. This can result in serious injuries.
Our bodies are likely to recognize we’re in danger before our minds do. As a result, adrenaline floods the system. With an adrenaline rush comes decreased pain, increased energy, greater muscle strength, increased oxygen, decreased peripheral vision (i.e. tunnel vision), and forward-directed hearing. As the adrenaline is released, so are endorphins. The endorphins can make a person appear calm and in control after an accident, even if they’re in shock.
Depending on the type of impact, certain injuries are more likely. In the event of a side-impact crash or a head-on collision, serious head, neck, or spine trauma can result in debilitating injuries. It’s likely that a person’s limbs sustain injuries in an accident, as well. Lacerations, bruises, and broken bones are common.
While seatbelts and airbags save lives, they can also inflict harm. In a high-speed accident, the impact with the airbags and the force from the seatbelt can cause some damage.
Recognizing Auto Wreck Injury Symptoms
Physical issues from a car accident can happen immediately after the event or, generally, up to six weeks later. Directly following an accident, a person is likely to experience high blood pressure, blurred vision, sweating, anxiety, and fear – in addition to the pain from their injuries. These symptoms tend to wear off within a few hours of the incident.
After seeking treatment, the symptoms can change. Headaches, neck or shoulder pain, general body soreness, swelling, bruising, backaches, dizziness, abdominal pain, and numbness are possible. Emotionally, a person could experience symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, including anxiety, depression, appetite changes, flashbacks, and sleep disturbances.
While the symptoms above may seem minor, they could be indicative of a worsening injury or condition. If, for example, a few days after an accident you start to experience an increase in headaches, there could be underlying head trauma that a doctor will need to address. It’s important to inform your doctor of all your symptoms as they develop, so you can ensure you are receiving the most effective treatments for your injuries.
Dealing with the Complicated Implications of Car Crash Symptoms
In order to deal with the symptoms of a wreck, it’s crucial to seek guidance from medical professionals. A medical doctor will be able to evaluate your injuries and make note of your symptoms, so you can get an idea of how best to recover. If your doctor says you’ll need to take time off work, it’s critical to do so. Returning to work too soon could worsen your injuries and hurt your personal injury claim. You might also need to consult a mental health professional to help you deal with the trauma of the accident – especially if you’re experiencing emotional symptoms that are interfering with your daily activities.
It’s no surprise that the symptoms you develop after a car accident can significantly impact your day-to-day life. You may be unable to work for an extended period of time, and you may be experiencing psychological symptoms that make it difficult to feel like yourself. If you’re trying to deal with insurance companies and negotiations while feeling less than your best, it’s easy to become overwhelmed. That’s why our lawyers are here to evaluate your claim and handle the legal work for you. To learn more, contact our office today.