When you are involved in an auto accident, what seems like a simple fender-bender could turn into a major headache when injuries are the result. Some people walk away from serious car crashes without a scratch. Others are in great pain because of the impact of smaller crashes, often because they suffer a debilitating traumatic brain injury.
The kinds of injuries that are sustained in a car crash depend on many factors: if you were or were not wearing a seatbelt; if the crash occurred at a low or high rate of speed; if the car was hit from the front, side, or rear; if the airbags deployed; if items in the car were dislodged and airborne; and if you were facing straight ahead in your seat, in a reclining position, leaning down, or turned in a different direction.
While fatalities are, of course, the worst outcome in an auto accident, the injuries that many drivers and passengers walk away with can be difficult to live with, treat, tolerate, and accept. Personal injury lawsuits are filed for a reason – people who are hurt in an auto accident have to live with constant reminders of their injuries, and some people can no longer enjoy the existence they once had because of a distracted driver, drunken driver, poor road conditions, or otherwise.
Here are five of the most common injuries sustained in a car crash:
- Brain and head injuries. A traumatic brain injury can occur in many ways in a car crash. The head making impact with the steering wheel, dashboard, or otherwise isn’t necessary to cause a TBI. And there needn’t be physical evidence of a head injury, like cuts, bruises, or open wounds. The collision alone is enough to shake your brain and cause a concussion or severe brain injury. In many cases, the symptoms of a TBI do not appear immediately. Even if you feel fine at the scene of a crash, never refuse medical evaluation.
- Facial injuries. A deploying airbag can save your life, but the force of the airbag releasing can also do serious damage to your face. Loose items flying through the car and broken glass can also be responsible for everything from minor scrapes to serious lacerations, jawbone fractures to broken teeth.
- Neck injuries. Whiplash is the neck injury most commonly associated with car accidents, but there are also problems like muscle strain and disc displacement. A sudden and unexpected collision causes irregular and injury-causing movements in soft and connective tissue.
- Back injuries. Back injuries can cause some of the most excruciating pain. And, unfortunately, when back pain begins because of a car accident, it is often difficult to eliminate, even with extensive and long-lasting therapy. Some people are simply forced to find ways to manage the pain for the rest of their lives as they deal with spinal injuries, fractures, sprains, slipped discs, and more.
- Emotional injuries. Easily overlooked in the wake of a car crash is the emotional and psychological toll that an auto accident can take on all those involved. Physical injuries are difficult enough to endure, but emotional distress can accompany broken bones or a TBI or simply exist on its own, requiring a lifetime of management.
It would be difficult to craft an exhaustive list of car accident injuries. The above conditions are common, but so are chest injuries, limb injuries, spinal cord injuries, organ punctures, and so much more.
David Christensen is a brain injury expert who represents victims that have been seriously injured or sustained traumatic brain injuries in car accidents. Christensen Law is personal injury law firm located in Southfield, Michigan.