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You’ve been in an auto accident, and even though you were able to walk away from it, you still have some minor injuries that just aren’t healing up. In fact, they might be worsening as time goes on. This means trips to the doctor and some pricy medical bills. How long should you expect this to last? Just how long does it take to recover from a car accident?
Depending on the extent and severity of your injuries, you could be looking at a recovery period spanning months. Let’s talk about what you can expect during your recovery period.
How long does it take for the pain to subside?
Even with minor injuries, pain symptoms could last from 6-8 weeks following the accident. If you’ve sustained whiplash, you’ll likely recover from it within one month’s time, perhaps even shorter. Properly set fractured bones can take about 8 weeks to heal. You’ll probably feel sore for about 4-6 weeks regardless.
When To See Your Doctor
Even if you’ve walked away seemingly unscathed, you should still see a doctor immediately after being in a wreck. Have first responders come and check you out, and if you are experiencing any sort of pain, allow them to take you to the hospital. Don’t put it off, even if you think you might just have some bumps and bruises.
If you do go home immediately and have pain or swelling the next day, you should see your doctor. Injuries need to be addressed straight away, and there needs to be a paper trail in case you need to file for damages.
Injuries Often Caused By Auto Accidents
Let’s go over the types of injuries most commonly seen in auto accidents. As any ER staff will tell you, these injuries can range from mildly alarming to downright gruesome. Read on – if you have a strong stomach, that is.
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
A substantial blow to the head or body can result in a TBI, which can be extremely serious. Any damage to the brain can be problematic, even deadly.
Spinal Cord Injury (SCI)
An SCI is any damage sustained to vertebrae, ligaments, or discs in the spinal column through crushing, compressing, fracturing, or dislocating of these parts. You can end up with a permanent loss of functionality and sensation below the point of injury.
Back injuries – such as herniated discs – can result in chronic pain, muscle weakness, and physical disability, losing the ability to perform everyday tasks.
Fractures are commonly found in the wrists, arms, legs, ankles, and ribs after a car crash. Doctors normally reset the bone to let it heal back together, taking up to 8 weeks or so to heal.
Soft Tissue Injury
Soft tissue injuries from auto accidents often come in the form of strains, sprains, or contusions. With prompt and proper medical treatment, these injuries can be fully healed. But, if you put off treatment, you could be in for a lifetime of increasing pain and loss of mobility.
Internal Organ Injury
Impacts from the vehicle and debris can cause internal organ damage. You cannot see this with the naked eye, but they often require surgery, especially if you have a lacerated liver or spleen. Failure to get treatment can lead to organ malfunction for years.
Actions To Take After An Auto Accident
If you have been in a bad auto accident and have lost some quality of life (and quite possibly some income from needing time off of work and expensive medical bills), you might want to hire a personal injury attorney. If someone else is the at-fault driver, you can be entitled to damages. In addition to compensatory damages, you might be able to pursue punitive damages, which serve to correct the at-fault driver’s behaviors.
Recovering from an auto accident can take days, weeks, months, or even years. For some folks, it means a lifetime of pain and loss of quality of life. If you’ve been in an auto accident, don’t put off getting medical treatment. And don’t rule out taking legal action against the at-fault driver; a good personal injury attorney can help you get the damages you need to get your life back on track.
By Anica Oaks
who is a freelance writer who hails from San Francisco. When she’s not writing, she’s enjoying her time outside with her dogs.
Member since August, 2019
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