The first several moments after a car accident may involve many different emotions and sensations for the victims. If you recently experienced a car accident, you may have felt anger, surprise, fear and relief in a matter of seconds. For many accident victims, the sense of relief they feel after the initial shock of the experience can be more dangerous than they realize.
If a victim does not feel any pain or see signs of injury like bleeding or broken bones, they may assume that they got lucky and managed to survive the accident without any injuries at all. Unfortunately, a variety of injuries may not cause pain for several hours or even days after a car accident.
Identify injuries before they cause pain and suffering
The best way to identify and treat hidden injuries, commonly called delayed onset injuries, is to undergo a full medical examination by a medical professional as soon as possible after a car accident occurs. This holds true for major and minor accidents, which can both cause significant harm.
While it may seem tempting to skip a medical examination after an accident, this is not wise. Catching a hidden injury before it grows worse and causes pain cannot only save you from a great deal of pain and suffering during your recovery, but doing so may also keep medical costs lower throughout the course of your treatment.
It is also important to recognize that some hidden injuries are quite dangerous, such as internal bleeding or organ damage. Left untreated, these injuries may ultimately kill a victim without proper medical intervention.
Head, neck and muscular injuries
Some of the most common hidden injuries occur in victims’ head, spinal column and soft tissue. If a victim suffers soft tissue injury, known as whiplash, they may not feel pain for several hours or until after they sleep. However, once the pain sets in, they may find it difficult to move and perform tasks necessary for living and working.
Similarly, damage to the spine may not cause pain at first, but these injuries interfere with proper nerve function, and can pinch or sever nerves, leading to loss of feeling or ongoing pain, tingling or burning sensations.
A head injury is easy to miss, and may not cause any problems for days or weeks. Once symptoms set in, however, a victim may experience great difficulty completing familiar tasks and communicating clearly, and may go through noticeable personality changes.
Protect your future today
If you decided to skip your medical examination after a car accident, it is still wise to seek it out as soon as you can. If you did suffer some injuries from your accident, medical documentation is a strong first step toward building a personal injury claim to compensate you for your medical costs and suffering while keeping your rights secure.