Should I See a Doctor After a Small Car Accident?
You may not think that you need medical attention after a car accident, especially if it was just a fender bender. There’s a good chance that you feel perfectly fine. And, you might be. However, don’t skip a trip to the doctor. Doing so could endanger your health and future injury claim.
Your Injuries Might Be Worse Than You Think
When a car is in motion, it has momentum. It doesn’t matter how fast or slow the vehicle is moving. When that car is in an accident, the momentum stops. It doesn’t just disappear, though. It gets transferred to whatever it hits and to passengers inside.
Many times, the impact of a car accident is more than our bodies can handle. You’ll probably get jostled back and forth. Seatbelts tighten and can put a lot of pressure on the body. You might even make contact with parts of the vehicle, such as the dashboard, door, or windshield. All of these things can cause injuries.
However, these injuries may not be visible. Internal injuries are incredibly common after a car accident. Internal injuries might include internal bleeding, organ damage, fractured ribs, or pneumothorax.
For other injuries, symptoms might not begin to show up for a few days. That’s actually quite common with whiplash. Just because you can’t see an injury or feel one now doesn’t mean it’s not there.
You Have to Mitigate Your Accident Injuries
If you suffer an injury in an accident, you can’t just let it get worse and expect someone else to pay for it. In Texas, you have to mitigate your injuries. Simply put, this means that you have to take reasonable steps to limit the extent and severity of your injuries. The easiest way to do this is by seeing a doctor as soon as you can after an accident.
If you don’t mitigate your injuries after an accident, you could lose out on valuable compensation. An insurance company might deny your claim and point to your failure to seek medical attention as the reason.
A Medical Evaluation Will Document the Link Between Your Injuries & an Accident
Let’s say you don’t go to the doctor until a week after your Austin car accident. When you go, you’re diagnosed with a fractured rib and whiplash. You know that you sustained these injuries in your car accident.
However, when you go to file an injury claim or lawsuit, someone will point out that you could’ve sustained those injuries (or allowed them to get worse) in the week between the crash and when those injuries were diagnosed. It might be difficult for you to prove negligence and establish a causal link between the accident and your injury. If you can’t prove causation, you risk not getting the money you need and deserve.
If you see a doctor right away, however, you’ll get a thorough medical evaluation. Your injuries will be diagnosed and documented right away. The medical report created by your visit will be incredibly helpful when you need to show that you’ve been injured because of a crash. It’ll be a great piece of evidence to support your injury claim.
Need more help? Speak with the Austin injury lawyers at Lorenz & Lorenz, LLP today. We offer a free consultation for your convenience.