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A car accident can be devastating and have traumatic effects for the rest of your life. The impact of a car accident subjects the human body to tremendous amounts of physical impact and force that can result in catastrophic damage. Even relatively minor wrecks can result in back pain, neck pain, and serious long-term injuries.

After a car accident, it is essential to seek medical attention. Unfortunately, many accident victims fail to do so for the discomfort, stiffness, or pain they experience. Some may think their body will heal in their own time or their injuries are not severe enough to warrant medical attention. Others may not even realize they are injured and only experience symptoms weeks or months following their accident.

Seeking medical help is one of the most important things to do following a car accident. To help you understand the importance of this step, we have put together a brief explanation of what happens to your body during and after a car accident.

How is Your Body Affected by an Auto Accident?

Although the forceful impact of a car accident can be severe, the dangers of wrecks extend beyond impact injuries. Collisions, particularly high-speed crashes, expose the body to extreme force. You can strain muscles and damage tendons as your body is bent, yanked about, and jolted. These injuries can sometimes result in long-term pain and may lead to complications such as loss of mobility.

There are innumerable ways an auto accident can injure your body, including:

  • Your head impacting against a dashboard, steering wheel, or windshield
  • Your body being jerked side-to-side
  • Your body being ejected from the car
  • Your body being flung forward or backward
  • Your head jolting backward or forward upon impact or a sudden stop
  • Your head or body being struck by another passenger
  • Your body or head being hit by flying debris

Each of these injuries can result in profound implications; however, not all will leave a physical marker of their occurrence. Aside from swelling and pain, you may not be aware that you have sustained a tendon or muscle injury. Sometimes, you may not even feel the associated pain for days or weeks after your car accident.

Should I Realize Immediately If I’m Injured?

When people experience an extreme sense of urgency, they can enter the “fight or flight” response. This acute stress response causes an increased heart rate, respiration rate, and secretion of hormones, including adrenaline (also called epinephrine) and endorphins.

Endorphin hormones are designed for survival. These hormones act as the body’s natural painkillers. Because of endorphins, many auto accident victims may walk away from a crash feeling no pain and believing they are uninjured. However, as the endorphins wear off, the pain may become noticeable.

Sometimes victims of car crashes initially report no injuries. However, days or weeks later, they may suffer from accident-related pain.

This latency is why it is crucial that you seek medical help as quickly as possible. Medical professionals understand what injuries to look for after a car wreck and can identify harms that may not be entirely symptomatic. They also understand how these injuries may worsen.

What Parts of My Body Are Most Likely to Be Injured in a Car Accident?

While any part of your body can suffer damage from an auto accident, some bodily injuries are more common than others. Here is a concise list of different parts of the body that are likely to sustain damage and injury.

Head and Brain Injuries

Your head has little protection in the event of a crash. Cuts and bruises are common as debris and loose items strike your head. Your head can also strike things in the vehicle, such as the steering wheel, dashboard, and windshield.

While cuts and bruises are often noticeable, brain injuries may not be.

Concussions and traumatic brain injuries can carry long-term complications and should receive immediate medical attention. Symptoms can include headaches, nausea, insomnia, dilated pupils, and memory problems.

Neck Injuries

Whiplash is a standard car accident injury that occurs when the accident jerks your neck and head forward or backward. This sudden, violent motion can strain, tear, and damage the neck’s ligaments, nerves, and connective tissues. All of these would fall under what people commonly call “whiplash.”

Whiplash injuries are most common in rear-end collisions. However, they can occur in other collisions and even in events of sudden braking where no actual collision occurred.

Upper Torso Injuries

The seatbelt can cause bruising and tissue damage to the collarbone, ribs, and shoulder as it restrains you. During higher-speed collisions, you may also suffer broken bones, including broken ribs, or internal lung and heart injuries.

Back and Spine Injuries

The spine and back can suffer significant trauma during a car crash. Injuries can occur when the car crash exposes your body to the violent forces of impact. The spine can bend in ways it is not intended to or be exposed to sudden, damaging jolts.

Herniated discs are among the most common injuries we see following a car crash. The pain of a herniated disc can be acute or chronic and may result in other adverse outcomes.

Injured in a Car Accident? Call the Law Office of Brock Duke

If you or a loved one have been injured in a car accident in Alexandria, Louisiana, call the Law Office of Brock Duke.

Nobody should struggle to receive the medical care they need after an accident. This is even more true when the crash was someone else’s fault. 

At the Law Office of Brock Duke, we understand the devastation car accidents can wreak. We will fight vehemently to secure the financial compensation you deserve. At the same time, we will also work with medical providers to ensure you get the treatment you need.

Call now to speak with a qualified Alexandria car accident lawyer about your case. We are available to help you and offer free case reviews to injured victims.

Do not wait; speak to an experienced car accident lawyer today and claim the results you deserve.