After a car accident, you will have many things to worry about. One of those things is whether or not people have been injured. An injured person shouldn’t be moved, unless it is absolutely necessary, so being familiar with some of the common injuries that could happen can help you know what to do if you’re in an accident.
Penetrative vs. Impact Injuries
The injuries that can happen in a car accident generally fall into one of two categories, penetrative and impact. An impact injury happens when you forcibly hit something, such as your head hitting a window. A penetrative injury happens when something penetrates your body, such as a piece of glass from a broken window cutting into your skin.
Head and Face Injuries
Head and face injuries are fairly common with car accidents, as your head is often more mobile in a car than the rest of your body that is restrained by a seatbelt. Head and face injuries from an accident can be both penetrative and impact injuries.
Concussions are often artifacts of a car accident and happen when something hits your head and shakes your brain. Signs that you might be dealing with a concussion include loss of consciousness, dizziness, confusion, and vomiting. These can also be signs of other problems, so be aware of that.
Things like black eyes and broken teeth are also common injuries from a car accident. You may get them from hitting the steering wheel, dash, window, or something flying around in the car. Even if you don’t think that the injuries are severe, you should get them checked because you could end up with broken bones in your face and not be aware.
Neck injuries tend to be soft tissue injuries because your neck has so many soft structures. However, you may see some injuries to the vertebra in your neck. If you suspect a spinal injury, do not move the person unless there is significant other danger. Moving them could cause other problems. The most common neck injury is whiplash.
Whiplash happens because your neck flings forward and back quickly and sharply. This often happens when you have been rear-ended. Whiplash stretches out the tendons and ligaments in your neck and can be difficult to diagnose because it doesn’t show up on an X-ray. You may need to wear a brace for a few weeks in order to treat your whiplash.
Shoulder and Chest Injuries
Your seatbelt can save your life, but in a significant enough accident, it can also cause some injuries. Your seatbelt locks up when hit the brakes to keep you from moving, but the force of your body moving at the same time the seatbelt is locking up puts you at a high risk for injuries.
Your seat belt runs right over the clavicle, which means when it locks up, it can cause a broken clavicle. The clavicle is the thin bone that runs from your neck to your shoulder. It can easily break, but fortunately it heals relatively quickly as well.
Bruised or cracked ribs are another set of injuries you can get from a seatbelt. Again, it’s better to get them checked out, even if they seem minor.
If you have been in a car accident and sustained an injury, contact us at The Jaklitsch Law Group. You may be owed money because of your accident and injuries. Bring us your case, let us evaluate it, and we can tell you what we think. You have enough to have to deal with after your accident, let us take that off your plate.