11 Signs You Need to See a Doctor for Your Car Accident Injury
Were you recently in a car accident and have a hard time recovering? Car accidents and the injuries that follow are one of life’s most stressful events, both physically and emotionally.
This is why it’s essential that you seek medical help after your accident instead of brushing your injuries off and hoping they’ll go away on their own.
This is especially true for injuries that you can’t see or seem surface-level. Any accident, no matter how minor, can cause serious problems in your internal organs.
If you’ve been experiencing chronic pain, bruising, headaches, difficulty sleeping, and a host of other health problems, it’s time to schedule a doctor’s appointment.
Here are the 11 most important signs you need to see a doctor after your car accident injury.
1. You Have Constant Headaches
If you didn’t suffer from constant headaches before your accident but they’re now becoming more frequent, this is a clear sign you need to call your doctor. Pain relievers can only help temporarily but after they wear off, you’re back to migraines or cluster headaches that can really affect the quality of your life.
Headaches can be a sign of a head, neck, or brain injury, so it’s important to see your doctor as soon as possible to see what causes them. Your doctor will order an MRI or a brain scan to see if there’s any bleeding or brain trauma.
2. Numbness In Your Extremities
If your car accident injury was on your extremities, it’s likely you’ll feel numbness or tingling in the areas of and around the injury. Even if the injury was internal and not visible on the outside, it can take weeks and months after the accident for you to regain full mobility and sensation.
This doesn’t mean you should wait to see a doctor. Sometimes, these things go away on their own after the body takes time to heal. Other times, they may need medical treatment in order to heal.
If you had a broken arm or leg, numbness can be a sign the bone is not healing properly or a nerve is damaged. Also, the bone may be healing the wrong way and is pinching a nerve or a tissue in the process.
3. You Have Neck Pain and Stiffness
After a car accident, you may experience neck pain and stiffness. This can be a result of a head, body, or back injury but it can also be a result of emotional trauma and stress.
Neck pain can also be due to a pinched nerve in the upper back or spine which can lead to more severe pain and discomfort. In a car accident, your neck and head go back and forth with great speed and if they hit a hard object with huge force and pressure, there’s no support to keep them protected.
This is how whiplash injuries happen. The symptoms may take a while to show up after the accident so make sure you get an MRI or a CT scan to see if there’s cause for concern.
4. You Have Chronic Back Pain or Stiffness
Chronic back pain or stiffness is one of the most common car accident injuries as a result of a pinched nerve, muscle injury, or misaligned discs. This can translate into other areas of your body since the spinal nerve is responsible for carrying nerve signals and messages to your body.
If you have low mobility in your back, suffer from constant pain, or have numbness in your fingers or toes, call your doctor immediately and schedule a checkup.
5. Vision Problems and Dizziness
Vision problems, blurry vision, and dizziness are common after a car accident. However, it doesn’t mean they’ll go away on their own. They may be a sign of an internal head injury that hasn’t healed that’s not visible on the outside.
This is why you should schedule an appointment with your doctor and get an MRI of your head as soon as possible. Your doctor may also order a checkup with the optometrist to rule out any underlying eye conditions.
6. PTSD and Emotional Trauma
Carr accidents are one of the most traumatic life events, both physically and emotionally. If the accident was serious and you suffered major injuries or lost a loved one, you should also consider healing the emotional trauma related to the accident.
The most common symptom of emotional trauma is PTSD (Post-traumatic Stress Disorder). If you’re experiencing flashbacks of the accident, have panic attacks, extreme anxiety, depression, or nightmares, it’s time to talk to a professional. At Complete Trauma Management, we offer trauma counseling services to help you process your emotions and start feeling better.
7. Problems Sleeping
Sleep problems, insomnia, nightmares, or inability to sleep well can indicate a head injury, emotional trauma, or chronic stress. Also, you may not be able to sleep because of pain, discomfort, or general restlessness after the accident.
Your doctor will examine you and see what’s causing your sleep issues so they can prescribe the right treatment or medication. It’s important to talk to your doctor to rule out any issues instead of taking sleeping pills and sweeping the problem under the rug.
Even though its’s difficult to talk about the accident and relive the experience, the only way to heal is to get professional medical help and the right treatment.
8. Abdominal Pain and Discomfort
Discomfort and pain in the stomach and abdomen area can be signs of an internal injury that needs treatment. If the pain comes with nausea, bloating, or improper bowel movement, you need to see your doctor.
After a vehicle accident, your stomach and all the organs inside your abdomen can suffer from the impact. This can lead to internal bleeding that you can’t always catch or wait to heal on its own.
If you have bruises on your stomach and they’ve stayed the same in shape, size, and color, this is an urgent sign to schedule a doctor’s appointment.
9. Surface Injuries That Won’t Heal
Whether you have bruises that haven’t healed, surface wounds, scratches, or other injuries that have stayed the same since the accident, they’re all signs you need to get a checkup. Though every injury needs time to heal, no progress can be an indication of a more serious problem.
Your doctor will prescribe pain management medication if necessary but if the injury is more serious, you may need to do additional tests and screenings.
10. Severe Bruising and Contusions
Bruises are normal after a car accident and they’re a sign of bleeding under the surface of the skin. This means the spot suffered a major impact and your skin and organs were pushed into a hard object.
Even though bruises are surface-level injuries, they can often be a sign of internal bleeding, blood clots, or bruising of the heart muscle. If the injury was minor, the bruising will go away quickly. If the injury was internal and more serious, the bruising will remain or get worse.
Don’t leave any bruise unchecked after an accident. Your doctor will do the necessary tests and prepare an injury rehab plan for you to follow. This can be anything from taking medication to going to physical therapy and doing light exercises at home.
11. Changes In Physical Function
After a car accident, it’s normal to be less physically able to do things like you used to. If you have difficulties doing your daily activities without pain and discomfort, it’s time to see a doctor.
Depending on the severity of your injuries, you may experience anything from muscle weakness to losing movement in your extremities. Even temporary memory loss can interfere with your daily life, so don’t wait a second further and schedule an appointment with your doctor.
When the injury is a broken arm or leg, until the bone heals completely, you’ll experience limited movement and possible discomfort. A great way to speed up the healing process after removing your cast is through physical therapy. It should help you regain movement and slowly get your injured spot back to normal.
But if your physical stamina and movement continue to decrease despite treatment and medication, it’s time to seek medical assistance.
Should You See a Doctor for Your Car Accident Injury? Follow These Signs To Find Out
Whether you’re still recovering from a recent car accident or it’s been a while since it happened, these 11 signs will help you take action and get your car accident injury checked out. Your doctor will make sure you do all the necessary tests and screenings and start a treatment plan to help you get better.
Start your physical and emotional healing journey with us at Complete Injury Management. We offer access to the best recovery and pain management companies and professionals to help you live a fulfilled, pain-free life after your accident.
Contact us today to learn more about our service providers and take the first steps toward managing your health and wellness.