What if I suffer delayed injury symptoms after an accident?

When you are in a bad car accident and can walk away from the scene, you most likely count yourself lucky. You’re thankful you didn’t break a leg or an arm even though your car is smashed up. However, maybe a couple days, or even weeks, after your accident, your neck really hurts. Or you suddenly are suffering from terrible headaches.

You may be experiencing delayed injury symptoms after your accident. Suffering delayed injury symptoms after a car accident is very common. That’s because your body produces adrenaline at the time of your accident. The adrenaline can mask the trauma your body has suffered.

You shouldn’t ignore seeking medical attention if you experience these common delayed injury symptoms after a crash:

  1. Headaches. Reoccurring headaches or migraines could be the sign you suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) in the accident. You need to seek treatment to see how serious your possible TBI is, so you can fully recover.
  2. Neck pain or back pain. You could be experiencing whiplash after your accident. In fact, 20% of those involved in rear-end accidents suffer from whiplash, many experiencing delayed symptoms. Or you could have suffered a spinal injury or ruptured disk if you have debilitating back pain.
  3. Abdominal pain. Abdominal pain can be a sign that you are bleeding internally. You need to seek medical care to see if you’ll need surgery to stop any internal bleeding.
  4. Numbness. Feeling numbness also can be a sign of suffering from whiplash. Or numbness can be a sign that you suffered a spinal injury.
  5. PTSD. Suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after a car accident often comes weeks after the accident. You can have flashbacks or nightmares about the crash. If your children were passengers at the time of your crash, they are more likely to experience PTSD after an accident.

You may be concerned that if you didn’t seek medical treatment at the time of your accident that could impact your injury claim. However, with delayed injury symptoms, it’s most important to seek treatment as soon as your symptoms surface. You want to have documentation of your injuries and your treatment plan. That will increase your chances of receiving maximum compensation for your injuries.