Driving is something that many people do every single day, and when we do something so regularly, we can start to forget the various risks and dangers associated with that activity. Every time we get behind the wheel and set off on the road, we have to accept and acknowledge the fact that an accident might happen and genuinely life-changing injuries can occur as a result.
In fact, statistics show that close to 6 million auto accidents occur in the US on an annual basis, causing about 100 deaths per day and so many injuries, ranging in severity from relatively mild bumps and bruises to truly serious fractures, breakages, brain damage, and more. These statistics don’t make for pleasant reading, but it’s important for every driver to be aware of them.
By knowing the real risks of the road and understanding how a single second of inattention or one bad decision may change your life forever, you’ll be better prepared and more motivated to drive safely and sensibly, following the rules, adhering to the speed limits, and making the right moves to keep yourself and other road users safe. This guide will take a look at some common types of auto accident injury.
What to Do After an Accident
Before we look into some of the most common types of car accident injury and how each one is diagnosed and dealt with, it’s important to first focus on what should be done if and when accidents happen. It’s normal for people to feel quite panicked and lost in these situations, but knowing the steps to follow can help you make the right choices and get the best possible outcome.
- Step 1 after an accident is to make sure that you get medical attention as soon as possible. As stated above, accidents can cause all kinds of injuries, and the symptoms might not always appear right away. So even if you think you feel fine or don’t notice any visible signs, it’s still wise to get to a doctor and have yourself checked over.
- You should also make sure to report and document the accident accordingly. This means that you’ll need to call the police and inform them of the situation, as well as taking photographs, collecting statements from any witnesses or passers-by, and making sure you build up evidence that could be useful later on.
- For insurance and safety purposes, you’ll also need to collect information from the other driver. This should include their name, address, contact details, license plate, car make, and model, and anything else you feel is relevant. This information can then be reported to the police, your insurance company, and your lawyer later on.
- You should also seek an attorney after an auto accident. Many people aren’t sure if a lawyer is really necessary, but the fact of the matter is that insurance adjusters will do whatever they can do to reduce the value of your claim, and other drivers might pursue legal action and try to make you take the blame for the accident. Getting qualified counsel after an accident is key.
Common Auto Accident Injuries
Now that we’ve seen some of the key steps to follow after an accident, let’s take a closer look at some of the different injuries that may occur, covering the basics of the injury itself, how it happens, what sorts of symptoms it can lead to, and how it may be treated.
Whiplash is one of the most common car injuries. It’s a neck injury, caused by a sudden, violent force on the body that forces the head and neck forwards or backward at rapid speed. This often happens when your vehicle comes to a fast and unexpected stop, like if you crash into another car or if you have to perform an emergency stop if someone steps out in front of you.
Rest and pain medications are usually enough to deal with whiplash, and the symptoms – which can include neck pain, neck stiffness, tiredness, and dizziness – should fade within a few days or weeks at most. However, in some cases, more serious symptoms may result from this injury, like memory loss and lack of focus.
One of the worst possible outcomes for any kind of auto accident is a brain injury. Unfortunately, these kinds of injuries are quite common, as both drivers and passengers can be flung forwards or in other directions when accidents happen, banging their heads onto the steering wheel, dashboard, or seats in front of them.
This can lead to a range of issues, which vary in severity. In some cases, only a mild concussion may occur, which can be resolved quite quickly and simply with physical and mental rest. In other cases, more severe kinds of traumatic brain injury or TBI may occur, which can lead to serious long-term issues like memory loss and basic cognitive difficulties. Therapy may be used as treatment.
Physical issues aren’t the only worry when car accidents happen. It’s not uncommon for people to struggle with various mental health problems too, which can include everything from PTSD to depression, stress, anxiety disorders, and the development of new phobias associated with driving or being on the roads.
These kinds of issues can have various consequences, such as interfering with a person’s career or personal relationships and may require extensive therapy, counseling, and care to gradually resolve. This is why it’s vital for anyone who feels scared, stressed, or depressed after an accident to get the help they need.
These are just a few of the most common car accident injuries. It’s also very common for victims to find themselves with bruises, cuts, broken bones, fractures, and more, and there are many other less common injuries that can occur too. To reduce your risks, make sure to drive safely at all time, making the right decisions, avoiding distractions, and keeping your concentration levels high to stay safe and set a good example for others.