The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that more than 6 million Americans were involved in a car accident in 2017. Nearly half of those people immediately reported being injured. Injuries that arise as the result of an automobile collision are often gradual and difficult to identify right away.
Many drivers and their passengers are likely to experience various degrees of shock, which can prevent them from immediately noticing injuries. If you were recently involved in an accident, it’s essential to seek medical attention as soon as possible.
This action is vital, even if you do not notice any significant injuries.
It’s best to seek advice and treatment from a chiropractor who specializes in auto accident injuries. Doing so can help with your settlement, especially if another driver is at fault. Delayed back pain after a car accident, in the form of whiplash, is often widespread.
Chiropractic care can help to reduce the pain and inflammation you may be experiencing, and these professionals are skilled in healing injuries after a car accident.
Postponed Pain After a Car Accident
Seeking treatment after a car accident can be complicated due to delayed pain. You may be able to walk away from the scene of a wreck and feel no pain at all, only to awake the next day aching all over.
This type of postponed pain results from excess adrenaline and endorphins pumping through your body. When you’re involved in an accident, your brain releases these chemicals in massive quantities. It does so to give you enough energy to deal with the situation, but it also masks pain in the process.
Many side effects of a car accident are not apparent until the next day, or perhaps the following week. This delay is why it is so important to seek immediate medical care, no matter the apparent severity of your symptoms.
Depending on the exact nature of the accident in which you were involved, you may find yourself suffering from:
- Neck and shoulder pain as a result of a secured seatbelt or deployed airbag. Also known as whiplash.
- Back pain that results from a sudden impact with a vehicle.
- Fractured or broken bones that result from physical impact with the doors, ceiling, or dense interior areas of your vehicle.
Keep in mind that these are not the only injuries of which to be aware. Understanding how shock occurs, and how it affects your body, is vital to understanding delayed pain. It is also essential to recognize psychological injuries in addition to your physical ones.
Belated Shock Symptoms Post Accident
Should you be lucky enough to walk away from an accident, seemingly unscathed, you are still likely to suffer from shock. Many things can send your body into shock, including trauma, allergic reactions, or poisoning. The trauma of a nearly fatal car accident can quickly put survivors into a state of shock.
While in shock, your body is unable to absorb an appropriate amount of oxygen.
Some of the most common symptoms of shock are:
- Rapid breathing and rapid pulse.
- Dilated or enlarged pupils.
- Weakness or dizziness.
- Cool, pale skin.
- Nausea and vomiting.
You may also experience chest pain, confusion, and loss of consciousness. The intensity of these symptoms depends on the nature of your accident. The more violent and dangerous the accident, the more likely you are to suffer from shock. But even a small fender-bender can make you feel shaky, scared, and sick to your stomach.
Wondering how long does shock last? This period depends on the nature of the trauma you are experiencing.
Physiological shock, or shock that results from a bodily injury after a car accident necessitates emergency care. Psychological shock, or emotional shock that results from trauma, is more challenging to diagnose and treat.
The mental exhaustion you may feel after an accident can continue for quite some time. Counseling and therapy can help you to overcome the emotional shock, though the amount of time such shock lasts differs from person to person.
Physiological shock is far more immediate.
If left untreated, it can prove fatal.
A team of medical professionals, including a chiropractor, can limit the damage that such shock inflicts on your body. Though you may feel that you are simply out of sorts due to the trauma of an accident, it is imperative to have yourself treated by a physician.
Doing so may save your life.
Delayed Car Accident Injuries
In addition to the injuries and symptoms mentioned above, you may also notice that you are feeling tired after a car accident. You may feel the need to sleep more than you usually do. Though this fatigue could be the result of stress, anxiety, and the steep drop in adrenaline, it is also possible that you are suffering from a concussion.
Unfortunately, brain injury is common in those who were involved in a high-speed accident, or one in which the vehicle was thrown about, tossed, or overturned. 20% of all traumatic brain injuries are the result of an auto accident.
If you’re sleeping a lot after a car accident, especially over several days or weeks, is an indicator that you may be suffering from some brain trauma.
You may also find it difficult to speak or remember things while suffering from a brain injury.
However, tiredness and memory loss are not the only symptoms of a brain injury after an accident.
Other delayed symptoms include poor motor control, tremors in your extremities, headaches, or blurred vision. It is also possible that you experience a shift in your personality. Such behavioral changes are a hallmark of brain trauma.
Though these symptoms may lessen in severity over several days, sometimes they do not. If you suspect any injury, especially brain trauma, you must seek care from a medical professional immediately.
There are several physical and psychological side effects of car accidents. You may now feel familiar with the physical injuries, but it’s important also to recognize and be aware of the psychological wounds. These may also become present after the fact.
Delayed onset of PTSD is prevalent in survivors of any traumatic event, including car accidents. The physical injuries that result from a crash may be belated, and therefore difficult to treat. But delayed psychological symptoms and injuries are even more challenging to remedy, as they cannot be fixed with conventional medicine.
Common symptoms of PTSD include:
- Increased heart rate and anxiety when driving. Something as familiar as a honking horn can send you into a panic, making it difficult to focus on your situation calmly.
- You are avoiding driving altogether to hide your fear or protect yourself from future accidents.
- Being easily startled by passing cars or sounds and sights you associate with your accident.
Awareness of these symptoms will allow you to seek the professional help needed to overcome them.
Seek Chiropractic Care Soon After Your Accident
There are many positive benefits to seeking out chiropractic care.
Though you may be feeling overwhelmed, it’s best to get treated as quickly as possible. It is crucial to keep in mind that chiropractors recommend weekly or bi-weekly visits, which can become a drain on your finances. The decision to continue treatment is up to you, though it is vital to get an initial diagnosis, as it will save you time, pain, and money in the long run.
Contact Beach Pain Center
If you have recently been in an auto accident in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex and are seeking chiropractic advice and treatment, our top-rated doctors are here to help.
Our office offers free chiropractic consultations to discuss your pain and recovery timeline.
Contact our office to get started today.