Delayed Injury Symptoms After a Car Wreck: What To Look for, What To Do Next
Just because you feel okay after a car accident doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re in the clear. Certain injuries don’t always make themselves known right away. While some injuries are immediately evident, others may take days or even weeks to manifest delayed injury symptoms.
Don’t dismiss aches, pains, or unusual changes in your health in the weeks after your accident. These could be symptoms of underlying injuries that might need medical treatment. This article will discuss some of the delayed injury symptoms you should watch out for after a car accident in Austin, TX. We will also provide tips on seeking medical attention and compensation if you have been injured in a crash.
What Signs Should You Look For?
In this section, we’ll explore six of the most common symptoms associated with delayed injuries and what injuries they could be associated with. All of these symptoms should be taken seriously, and seeking prompt medical attention can not only protect your health but also help you build a strong case if you decide to pursue legal action
Linked to concussions or other TBIs and whiplash.
Known as post-traumatic headaches, collision-related headaches are common and can occur immediately after the accident or take hours, or even days, to develop. During a car accident, your head can hit the car’s interior causing trauma to your neck and head. The force of the collision can also cause your brain to move around inside your skull, resulting in a traumatic brain injury.
Even mild headaches can indicate underlying injuries, so don’t wait for the symptoms to worsen or become unbearable. Remember, your well-being should always be your top priority after a wreck.
Linked to whiplash and other soft tissue injuries as well as spinal cord damage.
Whiplash is a type of soft tissue injury that occurs when the head is suddenly jerked back and forth like a whip, causing significant strain on the neck and back muscles and tissue. This type of injury is common in car accidents, where sudden stops can cause the body’s momentum to move forward, while the head snaps backward.
In addition to whiplash, neck pain after a car accident can also indicate other types of soft tissue injuries. Muscle strains or sprains can occur when the muscles in the neck and back stretch or tear during the sudden movement of a car accident. These types of injuries can cause significant pain and discomfort and may lead to stiffness and a reduced range of motion.
After an accident, you may not experience immediate pain or tenderness in the neck or back, and it can take a while for these symptoms to surface. However, stiffness or a reduced range of motion in the neck can indicate the need for medical attention, and ignoring these symptoms can lead to long-term damage or chronic pain.
Linked to internal bleeding and organ damage.
The force of a car accident can cause blunt trauma to the abdomen which can be life-threatening if not treated promptly. Experiencing abdominal pain or swelling after an accident is a medical emergency that requires immediate action, especially if you notice any other concerning symptoms such as dizziness, fainting, headaches, or bruising.
Remember that internal bleeding may not always be visible on the outside, and delaying treatment can lead to severe complications and even death. Don’t hesitate to call 911 or go to the emergency room if you experience any concerning symptoms. Early diagnosis and treatment can make a significant difference in your recovery and overall health
Linked to slipped or herniated discs, compression fractures or cervical vertebrae fractures, and spinal cord damage.
When the impact of a collision puts pressure on the spine, it can cause a variety of back injuries ranging from mild to severe. Lower back pain is particularly common after a motor vehicle accident, and it can be indicative of soft tissue injuries like herniated discs (when the impact of the collision puts pressure on the spine, causing a disc to rupture or slip out of place). Specific sensations in the back may include a dull ache or sharp pain, stiffness, and limited range of motion.
Your doctor may recommend imaging tests like X-rays or MRIs to determine the extent of your injury and develop an appropriate treatment plan.
Numbness and Tingling
Linked to nerve damage, TBIs, and spinal cord injuries.
Spinal cord damage, herniated discs, and nerve damage can all cause numbness, tingling, or even loss of feeling in the affected area. In some cases, these symptoms can be precursors to paralysis or other long-term neurological damage.
Keep in mind that experiencing neurological symptoms such as these is considered an emergency when they follow head, neck, or back injuries. Since those injuries are so commonly sustained after a wreck, an ER visit or 911 call is always warranted when you are affected by numbness or tingling in the days following an accident.
Behavioral or Emotional Changes
Linked to TBIs ranging from mild to severe as well as mental disorders such as PTSD.
Changes like these after an auto accident can be signs of both physical and psychological damage.
Brain injuries are a common cause of these changes, as they can affect a person’s mood, behavior, and cognitive function. For example, a person may become easily frustrated or irritable, experience mood swings, or have difficulty concentrating or remembering things.
Psychological trauma resulting from a car accident can also cause behavioral or emotional changes. PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) is a common mental health disorder that can develop after a traumatic event, and it can lead to symptoms such as anxiety and depression along with chronic pain and gastrointestinal disorders.
These symptoms can be disruptive to your daily life and may not go away without professional intervention.
How Do You Prove an Injury With Delayed Symptoms?
The key is to seek medical attention as soon as you notice any symptoms, even if they don’t appear until days or weeks after the accident. Delaying care can significantly impact your ability to get the compensation you deserve.
To prove your injury, your legal team will need to establish a link between the accident and your symptoms. They may use medical records, expert testimony, and other evidence to show that your injuries are the result of the accident.
In Texas, you typically have two years from the date of the accident to file a claim for compensation, but this timeline may vary depending on the circumstances of your case. To avoid missing your opportunity to recover all of your losses, be sure to consult with a lawyer as soon as you discover that you’ve been hurt.
Proving the extent of a delayed injury symptoms can be a challenge, but it is possible with the help of a trustworthy and competent legal team.
Have questions or are unsure whether you have a claim? Speak with an Austin personal injury lawyer at Lorenz & Lorenz, PLLC today. We offer a free consultation for your convenience.