Car accidents are an unfortunate reality of life, with millions occurring across the nation each year. In addition to the emotional and financial toll that car accidents can have on an individual, they can also result in a great number of physical injuries, ranging from minor cuts and scrapes to life-altering disabilities.
In a study conducted by the National Safety Council, it was reported that there were 5.4 million medically consulted injuries related to car accidents in 2021 alone. Here, we will explore the car accident injuries that are most commonly seen amongst individuals.
Types of Car Accidents
Before we dive into some of the most injuries that people may suffer as a result of a car accident, let’s look at the different types of accidents that exist:
- Rear-end collisions
- Sideswipe accidents
- Head-on collisions
- Side-impact (T-bone) collisions
- Rollover accidents
It is also important to note that car accidents do not necessarily have to only involve cars. Other parties involved may include trucks, motorcycles, and bicyclists.
Whiplash is one of the most well-known types of car accident injuries and is caused when your neck is forcibly and quickly jerked back and forth. This injury occurs most commonly with rear-end car accidents and results in strain and injury of the muscles, joints, discs, ligaments, nerves, and tendons in your neck.
The symptoms of whiplash differ from person to person, but most commonly include fatigue, dizziness, headaches, and neck pain, and stiffness. The faster a vehicle is traveling when it hits another vehicle, the more severe the whiplash will likely be.
Another one of the most common types of injuries that an individual may sustain from a car accident is a brain injury. A traumatic brain injury (TBI) occurs when the head and brain suffers significant force and impact. The severity of a TBI can range greatly, from mild, moderate, to severe, and symptoms may include headaches, sensitivity to light, difficulty concentrating, mood swings, and nausea. In more severe cases, the impact of a TBI can even be fatal.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Another common car accident injury is damage to the spinal cord. Spinal cord injuries also have the potential to be very serious, and three parts of your spine may be injured – cervical, thoracic, or lumbar. Symptoms of spinal cord injuries can include numbness, difficulty breathing, tingling, loss of bowel control, and loss of motion. In the most severe cases, spinal cord injuries can result in paralysis, also known as quadriplegia, which will forever impact how you carry out your life.
In addition to the soft tissue injuries previously mentioned, broken bones are another type of commonly seen injuries after a car accident. Broken bones can occur when the impact of the car accident is so severe that your bones either snap in half or become fractured.
Research shows that one of the most commonly injured bones to break is your leg. If your bone is not completely broken, you may suffer from a bone fracture, which is debatably more difficult to recover from. Treatment for fractures and broken bones can include surgeries in severe cases, as well as casts, splints, and braces.
What To Do After a Car Accident
If you are involved in a car accident, it is crucial that you take the appropriate steps afterwards. First, you want to seek medical attention if there is anybody injured on the scene. Your safety and well-being should be your number one priority.
Next, you want to gather any pertinent information from the scene, including contact information from witnesses, images and videos of the scene, and personal information from those involved in the accident. Then, you want to make sure you contact a New Haven car accident lawyer in order to guide you through the legal processes and help you recover the compensation and justice that you deserve.
Tips to Prevent Car Accidents
As you have learned, there are a number of severe injuries that can occur if you are involved in a car accident. Therefore, it is important to be cautious and responsible when driving on the road. Here are some relevant safety tips to help you avoid getting seriously injured in a car accident:
- Don’t drink and drive
- Obey speed limits
- Avoid getting in the blind spots of other drivers and be conscious of whether someone could potentially be in yours
- Wear a seatbelt
- Stay off your phone and limit other distractions
- Obey traffic signs, including stop signs and street lights
- Do not drive in severe weather conditions, unless it is necessary
- Use your blinkers
- Do not tailgate
- Make sure to take your car in for regular oil changes and maintenance
- Use the appropriate lights in order to see at night or through thick fog