Not all car accident injuries show up immediately — in fact, you may suffer unexpected post car accident symptoms indicating an undetected injury days later. Car accidents, no matter how minor, are traumatic. Brain chemicals may keep you from feeling all the effects of an accident at first.
How can you tell if the pain you’re suffering now is from post car accident symptoms? In this article, we’ll help by reviewing symptoms that may show up late, and explain why it’s important to keep an eye out for those symptoms.
Why Post Car Accident Symptoms Might Take a While to Appear
Mature has programmed your body to continue to function even after severe injury, so you can get out of harm’s way, seek help, and recover in a safe place. Your brain and body pump out chemicals like adrenaline and endorphins that block pain and delay shock, keeping you lucid and alert… for a while.
Once those chemicals fade, new symptoms may start to appear, sometimes long after a doctor has cleared you. Suddenly, you can find yourself in severe pain.
Soft Tissue Injuries
These are common after an accident, even if you were restrained or padded by airbags. Soft tissue damage can include injuries to interior organs, ligaments, tendons, and muscles. In addition to collision with the interior of the car, sudden stops can cause injury due to stress on your joints. You’ve heard of whiplash, which occurs when neck muscles are damaged because the head suddenly moves forward, then back.
Soft tissue injuries result in limited mobility due to swelling and pain. Sometimes they can take weeks to manifest fully, and because they’re invisible on X-rays, insurance companies may not take you seriously. They’re also harder to document, but do your best to get them accurately diagnosed as soon as they occur.
A concussion occurs when your brain forcefully strikes the inside of your skull as a result of outside trauma. The results sometimes don’t show up immediately. A severe concussion may result in obvious disorientation or unconsciousness, but there are also subtler symptoms to look for:
- Blurry vision
- Lack of energy
- Cloudy thoughts
- Trouble remembering new things
- Inability to concentrate
- A pattern of sleeping too much or too little after the accident
Seek medical help immediately if you have any of these symptoms after a car accident, just in case.
Go to a Doctor Even If You Don’t See Immediate Symptoms
Any serious car accident deserves a visit to the doctor, no matter how well you feel. If nothing else, the doctor can tell you what red flags to look for that may indicate delayed injuries. If you experience any post car accident symptoms, even after a fender bender, make an appointment or go to the emergency room. That pain you feel may be due to an injury that didn’t register earlier. In addition to possibly saving your life, this will help you document all your injuries for insurance purposes.
Don’t Sign on the Dotted Line Yet
You may hear from a sympathetic claims adjuster after the accident, who offers you a few hundred dollars for that seat belt bruise or banged knee if you’ll just sign a release. Don’t do it. First of all, you may be injured worse than you realize. Second, if they’re willing to offer money, you may have a case for a larger claim. Wait until you’ve been fully examined by a medical professional before agreeing to anything, and wait for as long as your doctor recommends you should, just to be sure something new doesn’t suddenly manifest. Once you’ve signed a release, it’s too late.
Call a Personal Injury Attorney Before You Settle
At Petro Law Firm, we specialize in helping injured Birmingham residents like you get the damage rewards you need to make you whole. If you have post car accident symptoms, you deserve to receive compensation for your injuries. Contact us online, or call us for a free consultation.