In 2020, when most Americans drove less due to COVID-19 lockdowns, an estimated 38,680 people died in motor vehicle crashes — the most since 2007. Through the first half of 2021, the United States was on pace to shatter that number, with an estimated 20,160 perishing in car accidents in just six months. While those numbers represent lives lost, they pale in comparison to the nearly 6 million who suffer injuries in car accidents each year.
While some car accident injuries are readily apparent and obvious — broken bones, friction burns, bruises, cuts and scrapes — there are others that are all but invisible until their symptoms surface days, weeks or even months later. No matter the diagnosis, the effects of a car accident injury can linger on for years.
That is why it is so important for those injured in car accidents to seek legal help. Conexion Legal has a network of expert traffic accident lawyers who can help you determine if you are entitled to financial compensation, and how much. Simply call 1-800-201-1220 or write to us through WhatsApp to receive free legal advice, and if needed, we can connect you to car accident attorneys in our network.
Before we outline the three major types of car accident injuries, remember this advice above all else: Seek medical attention as soon as possible after a car accident. You may have injuries you are not aware of.
Three types of car accident injuries
- Brain injuries
Car accidents are the second-leading cause of traumatic brain injuries, accounting for 17.3% of them in 2019, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Perhaps the most frightening part of traumatic brain injuries is that you may not even know you have one. Even if a victim does not lose consciousness, their brain may still have sustained damage. Because each brain trauma — like each brain — is unique, even low-grade concussions can affect a survivor’s long-term cognitive function.
Traumatic brain injuries may present with long-term symptoms that, taken by themselves, wouldn’t rise to the level of concern: headaches, dizziness, blurred vision, fatigue, confusion, ringing in the ears or slurred speech. Taken together, though, these symptoms could be signs of a deeper problem. Doctors have various tools at their disposal to diagnose and treat traumatic brain injuries, so seek medical attention as soon as you suspect that you or a loved one may be suffering from these symptoms.
- Back injuries
While seat belts help keep you from smashing into the windshield or steering column, they do not prevent all injuries. The forces involved in car accidents are sudden and can come from any angle, and the wrenching and twisting they cause can throw more than your steering out of alignment.
The most common back injuries caused by car accidents are spinal cord injuries, fractured vertebrae and herniated discs, as well as soft-tissue injuries like tears, strains and sprains. Torn or strained muscles can limit your ability to work or care for your family. A herniated disc or other impingement on nerves can cause chronic, severe pain, leading to depression and anxiety. Spinal cord injuries can cause paralysis or lead to loss of sensation, tingling, numbness or limited range of motion. While not all of these require surgery to correct, recovery can be lengthy and expensive.
- Neck injuries
Among the most common of all car accident injuries — especially in rear-end collisions — whiplash is caused by rapid back-and-forth movement of the neck, like the cracking of a whip. Some whiplash can be relatively minor, presenting with neck pain and stiffness, worsening pain with neck movement or loss of range of motion. More severe whiplash can also cause headaches (often starting at the base of the skull), tenderness or pain in the shoulder, upper back or arms, tingling or numbness in the arms, fatigue and dizziness.
Victims of more severe whiplash can also suffer from neurological symptoms, including blurred vision, ringing in the ears, trouble sleeping, irritability, difficulty concentrating, memory problems and depression.
As with the other injuries outlined here, effects can manifest several days after the impact, so pay attention to what your body tells you, and seek medical attention as soon as possible.
What do I do after a car accident?
In accidents that involve injury, the first call that should be made is to the police and your insurance company. Next, seek immediate medical attention, and contact an attorney.
If the accident was caused by another party, you can claim compensation for losses that include current and future medical expenses, as well as financial compensation for loss of property, loss of income and pain and suffering.
A trained car accident attorney can help you navigate the complex web of paperwork, insurance companies and police reports, and attorneys in Conexion Legal’s network will protect your rights, regardless of your immigration status. Schedule your free legal consultation by calling us at 1-800-201-1220 or by writing to us through WhatsApp. If needed, we can connect you to attorneys who specialize in cases just like yours.