More than 40,000 people die in car crashes each year in the United States, and in 2018, nearly 4.5 million were injured, according to the National Safety Council (NSC). Florida has seen an 11% increase in highway deaths since 2017. The NSC says many of these deaths and injuries are preventable.
Vehicle crashes can cause severe injuries that require prompt medical attention and result in long-lasting or permanent conditions, along with extreme financial consequences for the victims. However, many serious injuries may not be apparent immediately after a crash.
Common symptoms can occur days later
For anyone who has been involved in a crash, symptoms of potential injuries include:
- Headaches: Serious headaches can begin several days after an accident. In extreme cases, they can signal a blood clot on the brain, concussion or injuries to the head or neck.
- Shoulder and neck pain: Whiplash is the most commonly reported injury and usually happens as a result of a rear-end crash and can happen at speeds as low as 14 mph. X-rays, CT scans or MRIs may be needed to diagnose an injury accurately.
- Back pain: Injuries to the vertebrae, nerves, ligaments or muscles in the back often occur after rear-end crashes.
- Abdominal discomfort: Pain or swelling can indicate internal bleeding and other symptoms including deep bruising, dizziness and fainting.
- Numbness: Losing the feeling in your hands or arms is another possible indicator of whiplash resulting from damage to the neck or spine.
- Personality change: Any changes in a person’s demeanor or cognitive functions could signal a concussion or another traumatic brain injury. The signs include impaired memory, thinking, movement, vision and hearing problems or changes to personality and depression.
- PTSD: Victims of crashes often have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as victims can have vivid and disturbing memories of a crash. Children are especially vulnerable to these symptoms.
Seek immediate medical attention and get legal help
If you are or have been involved in a vehicle crash, it’s vital to your well-being to get checked out by a doctor, even if you don’t believe you are seriously hurt. Injuries can require expensive medical treatment for years and create financial hardships for victims through massive medical bills, lost wages and related expenses. If you are injured as a result of someone else’s negligence, an experienced personal injury attorney here in Florida can help you receive the compensation you deserve.