If you felt like you were able to walk away from your crash and go about your day, a few aches and pains may not seem like a big deal. It's important to understand that any pain or discomfort you experience after a crash (especially if it wasn't there before) is always something you should take seriously. It could be a sign of something much worse.
There are usually two reasons why people don't always feel injured after a crash:
- Adrenaline: The shock of being involved in a crash may give you a boost of adrenaline. This is a hormone that increases your oxygen and heart rate. It also causes you to go into fight-or-flight mode and masks physical pain.
- Delayed symptoms: Some injuries take several days to start developing symptoms. You may feel perfectly fine after a crash, but days later, the pain and discomfort can set in.
Injuries that commonly cause pain and discomfort
Pain doesn't have to be sharp or excruciating for you to have an underlying injury. You may only experience some dull aches and muscle spasms in your back or neck. You may also experience tingling in the limbs or may not feel like yourself. Here are some of the potential causes:
- Neck, back and spinal injuries: The most common spinal injury caused by crashes is whiplash. This occurs when a person's neck rapidly jerks forward and backward and damages the soft tissue surrounding the cervical region of the spine. People who sustain whiplash often experience pain and stiffness in the neck, shoulders and upper back. They may also experience headaches, fatigue and tingling in the limbs. Crash victims can also sustain slipped or herniated discs, which can lead to back pain, muscle spasms, numbness, burning and tingling in the limbs.
- Soft tissue injuries: These types of injuries generally occur when damage is inflicted to the muscles, tendons and ligaments. Muscles may become strained, torn or bruised from the impact of a crash. The tendons and ligaments can become pulled or torn, resulting in pain, swelling and loss of mobility.
- Mild traumatic brain injuries and concussions: Concussions are often considered mild traumatic brain injuries. Yet, they are anything but mild once they fully manifest. People who sustain concussions often experience confusion, disorientation, dizziness, nausea and vomiting, blurred vision, slurred speech, memory loss, fatigue, and irritability. Concussion symptoms can last several months, depending on the severity of the injury and the treatment received.
See a doctor & contact an attorney after your crash
Never put off seeing a doctor after being involved in a car accident. Your doctor will perform a physical exam, MRI, CT scan or X-ray to determine the source of your injury. You will also be given an official diagnosis. Make sure that this information is properly documented when pursuing a car accident claim.
After you've met with your doctor, speak to an experienced Arkansas car accident attorney to discuss your legal options. You may be facing high medical bills and may need to take some time off from work until you recover. The attorneys at McDaniel Law Firm, PLC know that this can be financially and emotionally devastating. We're committed to helping our clients recover every dollar they're entitled to.
We'll investigate your crash, prepare all supporting evidence and documentation, and advocate for a fair settlement. Our law office is located in Jonesboro. Contact us online to schedule your free legal consultation.