The impact of car crashes on human lives can be quite astounding, both in a figurative and a literal sense. It’s highly likely that you or someone you know has been in some kind of accident, whether it be a minor fender bender, or something far more tragic. In 2012, the total cost of injuries related to crashes totaled $18 billion, with 75% of the costs accumulating within the first 18 months of an accident happening. This shows at least two things to us, the first being that the effects of an accident can be far-reaching. The other is that some injuries don’t always come about immediately after the time of impact.
Perhaps you’ve heard someone say after a workout or an injury that they’re “going to feel it the next day.” That feeling is called delayed onset muscle soreness, or DOMS. This occurs when microtrauma happens to the muscles that the body needs to then repair. Because the body is not used to repairing this kind of damage, the process can cause soreness and pain. Generally, this isn’t something life-altering, but the premise behind it goes to show how the body can react to injuries after the fact.
Delayed soreness to your muscles can be an annoyance, but damage to your brain can have severe consequences. You might think that with the brain being so important, any injury to it would be immediately apparent, but that’s not always the case. A concussion might not be noticeable until days after the injury occurs. Even though most people fully recover from these injuries, concussions can be aggravated and cause further damage to a person’s brain if they’re not aware that they have one. As an example, let’s say you received a concussion from a car accident but weren’t aware of it; then, several days later, you slip and fall and hit your head. Your existing concussion can be made much worse by the fall, prolonging your recovery process and possibly causing lasting damage.
You may be aware of whiplash being parodied in films or television shows, where a person is in a car accident. While these jokes are good-natured fun, they do paint an inaccurate picture of a serious condition. Just like how a concussion can result from the violent back-and-forth motion of the brain, whiplash can cause damage to the neck from quick, violent motions. The symptoms of whiplash may not show up immediately, and when they do, they may show up progressively. What starts as neck pain can evolve into blurred vision, dizziness, and numbness in the arms and fingers. Most cases of whiplash result from being rear-ended in a car accident. Given the medical issues and costs associated with this condition, if you’ve been rear-ended, you may want to consult with an experienced auto accident attorney.
Of the many injuries you can receive from a car accident, one of them that may go the most unnoticed is a herniated disc in your back. Depending on the extent of the damage to that part of your back, a disc could be only slightly herniated, bulging, or the disc could completely rupture. Bulges or mild herniations may not even cause any pain but still be there, in your back, as you go about your day. If you don’t know that these injuries exist, then ordinary things you do like bending or standing up quickly could further affect the disc, causing it to completely rupture or make the herniation even worse over time. Treatments for herniated discs can range from bed rest and heat packs to physical therapy and pain medication, or even surgery. Between the cost of treatment and the cost of missing work, a personal injury lawyer should be consulted if you experience back pain following an auto accident.
The most important thing you can do after an auto accident is to seek medical treatment. Even if you don’t think you’re injured, any accident that involves you coming to a sudden stop or receiving a sudden jolt can cause any of the above-mentioned injuries. Your health is the most important thing you can tend to. Seeing a doctor to document the condition of your body after the accident, as well as any after-effects of it, can significantly help you show any delayed injuries you may have from your accident. After you’ve seen your doctor, call ELG Law at 623-321-0566. Whether your injuries are immediate or have the potential to develop over time, you’ll want an experienced injury attorney on your side who knows about these situations. Your injuries may be delayed, but don’t wait in calling ELG Law for a free consultation.