In the United States, car accidents are a common occurrence. While some result in immediate, severe car accident injuries, many individuals seem to escape from minor accidents without a scratch.
However, it’s vital not to overlook any minor pain that may surface after a car crash. These seemingly trivial aches could be an indication of more serious underlying health issues.
After seeking medical care right away, contact an Atlanta car accident lawyer at Bethune Law Firm.
Legal Risks of Ignoring Pain After a Car Crash
The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) found that in 2020, 2.1 million people visited emergency rooms due to motor vehicle accidents.
One of the primary reasons to seek immediate medical attention after an accident, apart from ensuring your health, is to safeguard your legal rights and your entitlement to compensation. Postponing medical care could unnecessarily complicate your claim for damages or even render it unviable.
Effect on Insurance Claims
If you delay seeking medical attention, the insurance company of the party at fault may deny your claim, arguing that your injuries were caused by another accident or incident. Insurance companies and opposing parties may question the severity of your injuries or even argue that your injuries were not a result of the accident.
Not seeking treatment sends a signal that you may not be injured, and therefore will not require a large personal injury case. Seeking medical care will help satisfy the insurance company and provide documentation for your personal injury claim.
Decrease in Compensation
Even if you recover compensation from the negligent party’s insurance company, you may end up receiving a reduced payment. The amount of compensation you receive could be directly impacted by the length of time between the accident and when you sought medical attention.
Statute of Limitations
In Georgia, the time limit for filing personal injury claims from car accidents is two years from the accident date. While you have two years to file a claim, it is worth noting that failure to seek immediate medical attention could harm your case.
The Misleading Effects of Adrenaline
Immediately following an accident, our bodies produce adrenaline to help us manage any injuries we might have incurred. This surge of adrenaline can conceal the pain of injuries, leading individuals to believe they are unharmed when they might not be.
In some cases, pain and other symptoms may not manifest until hours, days, or even weeks after the accident.
Delayed Symptoms From Car Accident Injuries
If you experience any of the following symptoms after a car accident, it is best to seek medical attention immediately.
Headaches are a common symptom that people experience after a car accident. While they usually subside over time, they can sometimes indicate more serious issues such as brain clots, neck or head injuries, or even a severe concussion. If you experience headaches following an accident, it’s advisable to consult a doctor.
2. Neck and Shoulder Pain
Discomfort in the neck and shoulders typically indicates whiplash, a common injury from car accidents. You might experience this pain immediately after the accident, but sometimes the symptoms can take days to appear.
If you start to notice pain or stiffness in your head, neck, or shoulders, it’s important to see a doctor.
3. Back Pain
Lower back pain is a common symptom following a car accident. Even if you don’t feel discomfort right away, it’s crucial to see a doctor to check for serious car accident injuries.
Numbness, especially in the arms and hands, can be a symptom of whiplash. It can also indicate damage to the neck or spinal column.
5. Abdominal Discomfort or Swelling
These symptoms could indicate internal bleeding. Other signs of this condition include deep purple bruising, dizziness, and fainting.
6. Changes in Personality or Physical Function
These could indicate a traumatic brain injury. Symptoms include impaired thinking or memory, movement problems, impaired hearing or vision, or personality changes.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is a common issue for car accident victims. If you’re experiencing flashbacks, nightmares, or uncontrollable anxiety, seek help immediately.
Always Get Medical Attention After a Car Crash
Even if you feel fine after a car accident, it’s essential to seek medical attention. A medical professional can evaluate your condition and identify any injuries that may not be immediately apparent. Early detection and treatment of injuries not only improve your chances of a full recovery but can also help in legal matters related to the accident.
Get Help From an Experienced Atlanta Car Accident Lawyer
While it’s natural to feel relieved if you don’t sustain visible injuries after a car accident, it’s crucial not to ignore minor aches and pains that may arise in the days and weeks following the incident. These could be signs of more serious injuries that need immediate attention. Always seek medical advice after a car accident, no matter how minor it may seem.
For legal assistance after a car accident, contact Bethune Law Firm at 1-800-INJURED for a free consultation.