Imagine driving through Pittsburgh on your way to work. Things are going fine until another car runs a red light and slams into the side of your vehicle. While your car took a pretty nasty hit and might actually be totaled, you don't feel anything wrong immediately after the wreck.
This is not unusual. While a broken bone is typically pretty obvious, other soft tissue and internal injuries may take a back seat to the initial adrenaline rush. Since you might suffer from delayed injuries, you may not even realize that you were injured until hours or even days later.
In addition to physical damage, car accidents can have mental and emotional trauma. Here are a few injuries you might suffer that may not be noticeable right away after a car accident.
Headaches, neck and shoulder pain
It might be two or three days after a motor vehicle before you start to feel a headache. In some cases, it might only be a minor injury but, in others, it could point to a larger problem. For instance, the headache could signal a blood clot, or serious head or neck injury. Neck or shoulder pain and numbness in the arms could be indicative of whiplash.
If you begin to feel back pain after a wreck, the impact of the accident could have caused an injury to the muscles, ligaments or the nerves in your back. The pain might even signal that your vertebrae suffered damage.
Pain or swelling in the abdomen
Abdominal pain or swelling, or large bruises that are dark purple, could be signs that you have internal bleeding. Unfortunately, it can take hours or days to see these symptoms which could put your life in danger. If you think you have internal bleeding, seek emergency medical care immediately.
When a person suffers a traumatic brain injury, it could cause changes in personality or even physical abilities. You could suffer memory problems or have trouble with normal movements, blurred or distorted vision, problems hearing and depression.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
PTSD is also a common condition for people to suffer after a car wreck. You might have disturbing dreams, memories or flashbacks of the accident. This could cause extreme anxiety when you get behind the wheel or simply ride as a passenger.
If you have been in a car accident, it is vital that you seek immediate medical attention to assess for any injuries, even if you seem to be fine. You might be able to file a claim for the damages and injuries you suffered and win the compensation you deserve.