Common Auto Accident Injuries and How to Cope With Them

crutches for auto accident injuries

Nearly 4.8 million Americans sought medical treatment for auto accident injuries that were sustained in a collision. If you were involved in a car accident, you should always be examined by a doctor, regardless if the injuries appear minor or severe.

What injuries are most common after car accidents? How can you hurt your neck, back, and head? What should you do to get treatment? Answer these questions, so you can treat your injuries appropriately. You can also be compensated for your injuries if a negligent driver caused the car accident.



Your neck contains many soft tissues, including ligaments and tendons. When your neck snaps forward, these tissues can tear, causing stiffness and pain. You can experience whiplash after any car accident, including low-speed ones. You may feel immediate pain, or the pain may surface after a few minutes or hours.

Some cases of whiplash recover without extensive medical intervention. You can take painkilling medication or put ice on your neck to soothe your pain.  But you may experience mobility issues, especially when you turn your head or bend over at the waist. It is okay to have difficulty a few hours after your accident, but you should have full mobility after a few days.

If you’re finding it difficult to move around, you should go to a doctor. Whiplash is one of the most common auto accident injuries, and you can get effective treatment.

If you do not get whiplash treatment, you may experience chronic pain. You also may not be able to file a personal injury claim and receive compensation in a timely fashion.

Your doctor may recommend that you perform exercises that build the muscles in your neck and shoulders. You can also receive physical therapy, working with a professional therapist to move without pain.


Soft Tissue Damage

In addition to whiplash, you may experience other problems with soft tissues. You can pull a muscle in any part of your body, including in your hands and feet.

Ligaments are bands of tissue that connect two bones together. You can sprain a ligament in your ankle if you press down on the brake pedal during the accident. You can also sprain your wrist if you grip the steering wheel too tightly.

Muscle strains and ligament sprains can also occur during low-speed car accidents. They can make it hard to move or hold objects. If you leave your soft tissue damage untreated, you may experience long-term mobility issues.

However, nearly all strains and sprains heal themselves within a few days. You should rest the injured area and put ice on it to reduce swelling. Try elevating the injured area over your heart so blood flows between your heart and the injury.

You can visit a doctor, even if you think your sprain is minor. Wearing a cast can keep the injury still and prevent tissues from tearing further. You should go to a doctor if you have significant pain or mobility problems.


Broken Bones

178 million people broke bones in 2019, with many people doing so after car accidents. You can break a bone in your arm or leg if you use it to brace yourself during the accident. You can also break a bone in your face if your head collides with the door, window, or steering wheel.

A broken bone is always a medical emergency. Signs of a broken bone include a visible deformity, extreme pain while moving the injured area, and bleeding. You should call for an ambulance and remain still, as moving around can make the broken bone worse.

You may need to go to the hospital for your fracture. A broken bone can cause internal bleeding or damage an organ. Doctors can set the bone in place with a cast, and you can go home and rest. It may take weeks or months to recover from the accident. Spend time resting and keep the injured area dry and elevated.


Abdominal Injuries

You can sustain several different abdominal auto accident injuries. If your seat belt is very tight, it can pull against your abdomen and cause bruising and abrasions.

If you strike your abdomen against a part of your car, you can develop internal bleeding or organ damage. A bone can break and puncture an organ, or you can sustain blunt force trauma that results in damage.

The signs of abdominal injuries can be subtle. You may feel pain, but you may think the pain comes from bruising or muscle strains, not internal damage. Internal bleeding can cause shortness of breath, dizziness, and nausea, which some people mistake for a panic attack.

If you think you have an abdominal injury, you must get medical treatment. You may need blood transfusions or surgeries, which can take a few days or weeks to recover from. Cooperate with your doctors and pursue therapy if you experience long-term pain.


Brain Injuries

Your brain can move around inside your skull. If you strike your head against something, you can develop a concussion, even if your skull isn’t damaged. Cells strike the inside of your skull and become damaged, resulting in unconsciousness and cognitive problems.

You can also develop a brain injury if your head moves forcibly in one direction. Cells can twist or tear, causing permanent complications.

A brain injury is the most severe injury after an auto accident. You may need several types of therapy, including psychological therapy. You should talk to an auto accident lawyer, as they can negotiate with the insurance company to get the compensation you need.


The Most Common Auto Accident Injuries

Whiplash and soft tissue injuries are the most common auto accident injuries. You will need to rest if you have these injuries, but they should heal within a few days.

Broken bones can take several weeks to recover from, and you must follow your doctor’s instructions. Abdominal and brain injuries can be life-threatening. If you experience complications, you can cope by pursuing physical and psychological therapy.

You can be compensated for treatment with a lawyer’s help. Harbor Accident Lawyers in San Diego specializes in auto accident injuries and can help you get the compensation you deserve. Contact us today to learn more.