Motor vehicle accidents can cause major injuries to nearly any part of the body. This is particularly true for drivers or passengers who don’t wear seat belts, since they can be tossed violently about the vehicle or even out of the vehicle. Even if you’re in a fairly minor car accident, motorcycle accident, bus accident, or rideshare accident, you could be more severely injured than you think. It’s always best to talk to a car accident lawyer if you think you have suffered one of the following common injuries in a crash.
Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI)
Car collisions are one of the leading causes of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), which happen when the body comes to a sudden stop and the brain continues to move forward or backward in the skull. Concussions are a form of TBI, but while concussions typically heal, some people who suffer from TBIs never fully recover. Every year, approximately 50,000 people die from TBIs and another 90,000 suffer from long-term disabilities related to TBIs.
Spinal Cord Injuries
The violent impact of a car accident can twist the body in ways it shouldn’t be twisted, causing injury to the spinal cord. Often, a damaged spinal cord results in partial or total paralysis below where the injury occurred. Those who suffer from paralysis below the neck have quadriplegia and those who suffer from paralysis below the waist have paraplegia.
Back and Neck Injuries
Back and neck injuries are extremely common following car accidents, and even more so after bus accidents. They are some of the weakest parts of the body when it comes to being able to sustain heavy impact. Whiplash is a type of neck injury that occurs when your neck and head are thrust violently forward and backward when your body comes to a sudden stop, but your neck keeps moving. Back and neck injuries can occur during even low-speed crashes and they might not show up for days or even weeks after the event.
Of course if a car catches fire after a collision, burns are almost a given. But, you can also get burned if your skin comes in contact with hot fluids, steam, hot surfaces, or chemicals. Burns are dangerous because the barrier to infection (your skin) is gone, leaving some of your internal body exposed to bacteria. They are also extremely painful and often require skin grafts to repair the damage.
The force of a collision can result in damage to your internal organs. Lacerations in particular can cause internal bleeding that must be stopped immediately or you could bleed to death. This is why emergency rooms often perform CT scans if you’ve been in a car accident even if you don’t appear to have any external injuries. You might not even realize you have internal bleeding until it’s too late, so always seek medical treatment after a crash.
Bones are strong, but they can’t always withstand the impact of a car accident. Broken legs, arms, ribs, ankles, wrists, and pelvises are the most common types of fractures that occur in car crashes, but you can really break any bone in your body depending on how the car is damaged and where you are in the car when it hits the other object.
Hopefully, you’ll never be in a car crash that causes an injury, but if you are, seek medical treatment immediately and call a lawyer to protect your rights.