You’ve just been in a car accident. You don’t seem to be injured, and neither does anyone else involved, so your attention turns to other things. How damaged is your car? Is it drivable? Should the police be called? You worry about insurance issues, getting your car fixed, finding an alternate mode of transportation. The last thing you stop to think about is whether you’re really ok. But that’s actually the first thing you should be thinking about. Cars can be repaired or replaced. You’ll find a way to deal with all of the hassles that result from an accident. But ignoring injuries can have damaging effects that last a lifetime.
After an auto accident, the first thing you may feel is shock. Then adrenaline kicks in to help you handle the stress of the situation. Later, you may notice little things. You’re a bit sore and stiff. Maybe you have a headache. You feel tired, but that’s normal after such a stressful situation, right? Or maybe your only complaint is that you just don’t feel like yourself. Don’t ignore any of these symptoms! Hidden injuries are not uncommon after an automobile accident. You need a doctor who is trained to pick up on soft tissue injuries like whiplash. Such injuries can cause you problems for months, years, and maybe even the rest of your life. You should also be on the lookout for symptoms that appear days, weeks, months, or even years later – things like muscle spasms, tingling and numbness, difficulty sleeping, irritability, trouble concentrating or memory loss, and, of course, any kind of pain.
So, if you walk away from a car accident convinced your fine, you may want to reevaluate that conclusion. If you have any symptoms, or even if you have none at all, isn’t it worth it to get checked out? Your long term health may depend on it!