Anyone who’s been in a car accident can attest that after the shock has subsided and the adrenaline subsides, the bumps, bruises, and pain can persist hours, days, or even weeks later. While it is hoped that these injuries are minor and require no more than a little rest to recover, persistent pain can indicate a more serious underlying physical injury.
This discussion explains what anyone with undiagnosed aches and pains needs to know about pain and injuries in automobile accidents and why it is so important to see a doctor after any type of automobile accident.
Common injuries from car accidents
Although certain injuries and symptoms depend on the speed of vehicles and the angle of impact, certain injuries from a car crash are more common than others.
Broken bones. It is common for occupants to fracture their arms, legs, ribs, and sternum in high impact collisions. This risk increases for passengers who at the time of the accident are not wearing their seat belts and are acting on the steering wheel, dashboard, front, sides or rear of the vehicle.
Pain and other symptoms of a broken bone depend on which part of the body the injury occurs and how severe the break is. Some broken bones need to be poured. Others require extensive surgery and pins and rods to set the broken bone.
Cuts. Cuts or cuts occur when passengers encounter broken glass, metal, and other sharp objects. These injuries can be very painful and potentially cause infection to the body, leading to increased pain and serious health complications.
Soft tissue injuries. Strains, sprains, and tears in tendons, muscles, and ligaments can occur when the body is suddenly pushed in any direction or when body parts are pushed in different directions when a vehicle collides with another object. Ice, rest, altitude, and compression can all help relieve mild aches and pains. Some soft tissue injuries require surgery and weeks or months of rehabilitation to get the patient mobile again.
Whiplash. Whiplash is one of the most common types of soft tissue injuries in car accident victims. It is a neck injury that is caused directly by a sudden and forceful movement of the head and neck. Passengers involved in rear-end collisions are more likely to suffer whiplash injury if their head jerks forward when the vehicle behind them hits the rear of their vehicle.
Symptoms of whiplash injury include:
Arm numbness or tingling
Limited freedom of movement in the neck
Neck pain and stiffness
Pain in the shoulder, upper back, or arms
Factors that lead to pain after a car accident
All of the above injuries can cause acute or chronic aches and pains. Many different elements determine how mild or severe the aches and pains will be after a car accident.
These elements include the following factors:
When the airbags have deployed
Where the occupant was sitting in the vehicle
When the occupant is wearing a seat belt and wearing it properly
Where the impact on the vehicle occurred
How fast all vehicles drove during the accident
The size and weight of the vehicles involved
If the inmate already had injuries
When the inmate received immediate medical attention
Delayed Injuries: Delayed Pain and Discomfort
It is important that anyone involved in a motor vehicle accident consider the possibility of a delayed onset injury. As the term suggests, these are health conditions that develop over time after a car accident.
The victim may feel comfortable in the moments and hours immediately after an accident, only to discover pain, stiffness, and pain the next day or week. Since some time has passed, they may not even connect to the accident and find that their symptoms are from the accident in the first place.
In addition to being the main insurance claim complaint in the United States, whiplash is a good example of a delayed injury causing pain and aches and pains. Neck stiffness and discomfort caused by whiplash can only develop 14 to 48 hours after the first accident.
Abdominal injuries, back injuries, and traumatic brain injuries (TBI) can also cause symptoms hours or days after a physical trauma such as a car accident.
Why aftercare after a car accident is so important
Delayed injuries show why it is so important for anyone involved in a car accident to see a doctor. Although catastrophic injuries require immediate on-site or emergency treatment, less obvious injuries should also be investigated. And as mentioned above, car crash victims don’t always have symptoms straight away, but that doesn’t mean they won’t get injured.
Individuals involved in a car accident should always be examined by a doctor to rule out serious internal injuries and avoid long-term complications that are more difficult to treat. Chronic aches and pains can sometimes be avoided or reduced with immediate medical attention after a car accident.
I am still in pain weeks after my accident. What should I do?
Chronic pain and discomfort have more of an impact than physical well-being. They can also affect mental and emotional health. Living in constant pain can cause someone to become sad, withdrawn, and depressed. Victims must never give up on treatment for persistent pain. You should find a doctor who takes the time to listen to the patient’s concerns and explore new treatment options when something goes wrong.
There are many new and innovative pain relief treatments available today:
Electrical nerve stimulation
Sometimes it’s not a treatment that works long term. It is a well-thought-out treatment plan that includes multiple therapies to eliminate the causes of aches and pains and provide lasting relief.
How do I pay for medical care after an accident that wasn’t my fault?
It’s unfortunate, but in some cases, people who experience pain and other symptoms after a car accident cannot see a doctor for financial reasons. Even with health insurance, co-payments and uncovered medical care costs can be quite costly.
Fortunately, automobile accident victims in New Jersey and the United States may be eligible for compensation to cover medical bills and other expenses related to a vehicle accident.
Non economic auto accident damage in New Jersey
Pain is viewed as a non-economic cost or loss of personal injury in New Jersey. It’s compensable and the actual amount depends on several variables:
The nature of the pain and discomfort
The severity of the pain and discomfort
If the discomfort responds to treatment
How the discomfort affects the person’s everyday life
Although pain and suffering are fairly subjective concepts, the insurance provider in an insurance claim or the judge in a personal injury proceeding will calculate a grand total based on the above factors. Your job is to compensate a person based on how pain and pain due to injury has negatively affected the victim’s quality of life.
Why legal representation is crucial for collecting pain and suffering damage
Since it is difficult to assign a monetary value for pain and discomfort, it is important for someone with persistent symptoms to hire an experienced attorney to run their case. Unlike an x-ray, which clearly shows a broken bone, proving that someone is in pain and that pain has changed their life is no easy task. However, it is a necessary step to cover the cost of treating this pain, and it is to be hoped that physical and emotional healing is possible after a major accident.
A skilled auto accident attorney understands the law and knows the best legal approach to showing why an accident victim deserves compensation for pain and loss that are not that easy to quantify. Accident victims can help their attorney by saving all the records related to the accident: photos of the scene, car repair bills, hospital bills, police reports, and records of lost wages when the person is unable to work due to pain.
All of this evidence tells the story of an accident, how the client was injured, and how persistent pain negatively affected the victim’s life.
Car Accident Attorneys in Monmouth County at Ellis Law fight for clients dealing with pain and suffering
Vehicles can be repaired, but the physical aches and pains that some accident victims experience are not that easy to fix. Monmouth County’s auto accident attorneys at Ellis Law see firsthand how debilitating permanent injuries can be. We work tirelessly to stand up for you and get the compensation you deserve for physical injury and mental agony caused by a guilty driver. Call us at 732-308-0200 or contact us online for a free consultation. Based in Freehold, New Jersey, we serve clients across East Brunswick, Toms River, Middletown, Jersey City, Neptune, Marlboro Township, Hudson County, Union County, Essex County and Ocean County, as well as Brooklyn and New York, New York.