Common Car Accident Injuries and How To Treat Them
Posted on January 12, 2018 |
by Bradley Dworkin
Car accidents are a leading cause of injury in the United States. Not only are they expensive, but they can also impact your daily life due to pain and suffering. Winter is unpredictable and can create unsafe driving conditions with snow on the roadway, black ice, and reduced visibility.
It is important to seek continued medical attention after an accident. While every accident is different, there are a few common injuries and exercises you can do to relieve pain. Please remember this list and exercises are not exhaustive and do not replace a doctor’s expertise. It is imperative to a case to seek medical attention and have continued care.
Neck injuries: A common neck injury is Whiplash. Frequent in rear-end collisions, Whiplash is a sudden and quick movement of the neck and can cause ligament and muscle damage. General neck pain and swelling is common after a car accident. Although not as common, patients can temporarily have vocal cord paralysis. Neck injuries may have lasting consequences and must receive medical attention.
Pain relief techniques:
- Aerobic exercise releases endorphins that can help reduce neck pain; about 30 minutes of cardio is sufficient
- Behind the back neck stretch: stand with your feet hip-distance apart, reach your hands behind you and hold onto the right wrist with your left hand. Straighten your left hand gently to pull your right arm away slightly. Then alternate arms and perform the stretch again.
- Chin tucks: this exercise stretches your upper neck and upper back. Squeeze your shoulder blades while slowly pushing your head back and tuck in your chin. When you feel a stretch along your back, it is time to stop. Hold for three seconds and repeat ten times.
Chest Injuries: Blunt force trauma can break ribs and cause collapsed lungs. A chest injury may also damage organs and requires immediate medical attention.
Pain relief techniques:
- Rest for one to three weeks
- Apply Ice
- Practice deep breathing exercises
- Stand up straight, take a slow deep breath
- Hold in air for three to five seconds
- Exhale slowly and hold the end of the expiration for three to five seconds
Head Injuries: In an accident, drivers and passengers may hit their head against the dashboard, steering wheel, windows or against the seat in front of them (in the case of a passenger). Head injury from a car accident can range from mild concussions to serious life-impacting memory and cognitive impairment. Head injuries might influence sight and hearing, and require medical attention.
Pain relief techniques:
- Reduce demands like: reading, watching TV, and using your phone
- Temporarily avoid (check with your doctor) physical and mental demands like long walks, going to work, or school
- Stretch often, especially after waking up, and before going to bed
Back Injuries: Car accidents can cause spinal cord and back injuries, and the possibility of a herniated disk. Spinal cord injuries may occur when the upper body is thrown forward while the lower body is secured by the seat belt. It is important to be evaluated by a doctor as some back injuries may be difficult to detect and could feel like general soreness.
Pain Relief Techniques
- Cat-Camel exercise
- Get on your hands and knees with your head relaxed
- Round your back up toward the ceiling, then reverse this to bend downward, focusing on strength in your core
- Swimming can reduce the stress of gravity on your body
- This lets your body strengthen muscles in your neck and back without furthering damaging your back
- backstroke and breaststroke are best
Of course before an accident and sustaining these injuries there are ways to prevent car accidents. The best way to avoid being in a car accident is practicing safe driving techniques. You cannot control what other drivers do, but you can lower your risk for being responsible for an accident.
Ways to prevent car accidents
Hands-free technology: do not use your cellphone at all while driving. If you must, use a bluetooth handsfree system. It can wait.
If possible, don’t drive in inclement weather: reconsider the need to run an errand if the weather is bad and the roads are dangerous.
Be alert and avoid driving tired: although this seems obvious, driving while tired is dangerous and can lead to mistakes.
Service your car: make sure your car is up to date with possible repairs and dealer recalls.
We hope this article helps the injured with a quicker recovery. If you are in an accident it is important to get medical treatment. Please consider that continued medical treatment is necessary when building an injury case. If you believe you’ve been a victim of injury, don’t hesitate to call our law firm for a free case assessment at 888-979-2070.