The impact associated with a car accident, can lead to both pain and paralysis. That is why injuries associated with these mishaps often involve the soft tissue. Soft tissue damage frequently affects the tendons, ligaments, and muscles of the head and neck – a condition that often causes whiplash. Whiplash happens when a victim’s neck muscles stretch in response to the jolt of a collision. People often suffer from spinal problems, or herniated disks as well.
What the Doctors Report
Doctors who treat neck and spinal injuries support these findings. According to County Line Chiropractic, a Fort Lauderdale car accident doctor who sees a large number of patients following automobile accidents, “Many of the injuries following a car accident involve the neck or spine.”
Reviewing the Top 5 Complaints
The information below covers the top 5 injuries drivers face after vehicle collisions. Knowing this information is essential, especially if you get involved in a car crash, as the main two injuries, whiplash and spinal problems, may not present themselves right away. That is why it is important to seek treatment immediately, even after a minor fender-bender. The sooner you are treated, the easier the recovery.
The top injury suffered by car accident victims is whiplash. This sudden and extreme back-and-forth motion of the neck can lead to a great deal of pain and suffering. Whiplash victims often experience symptoms, such as the neck stiffness and pain, headache, tiredness, dizziness, and tenderness in the upper region of the back, including the shoulders. Getting rear-ended often triggers whiplash, a condition that can lead to a long and agonizing recovery.
2. Herniated Disc and Spinal Cord Injuries
In total, 33 vertebrae make up the spine, each bound by discs that resemble small doughnuts. The 33 stacked vertebrae run along the spinal canal – a protective bony column that protects the spinal cord and its nerve bundle.
When a herniated disc occurs, it may happen anywhere along the spine. Spinal discs provide support, cushioning, and shock absorption between the vertebrae. Therefore, a slipped or herniated disc is a frequent impact injury, as the force of the crash can cause the disc’s soft middle to push through the bony casing of the canal.
In turn, the resulting protrusion may irritate the adjacent nerves, leading to numbness, pain, or weakness in the arms or legs. If a herniated disc is causing pain or irritation, doctors usually treat the condition with physical therapy, medications, or possibly surgery.
Because of its force and suddenness, a vehicle collision can also cast a violent blow to the head, leading to a brain injury. The resulting concussion can trigger serious manifestations, including memory loss and problems with coordination, balance, and focus. Symptoms, such as headaches and nausea, can also last several weeks.
4. Facial Injuries
When an auto crash occurs, many items, inside the car, are not tied down, and therefore can fly and strike the victim in the face. These items may include cups, keys, books, or bags. Airborne shards of glass and metal can also do a lot of damage.
In an auto accident, the face and head are two of the most vulnerable parts of the body. Some patients suffer from bruises or lacerations from banging against the steering wheel, getting hit with a car seat, or getting injured when the airbag explodes. A facial injury may involve bruising or cuts, or may spark a more severe wound, such as a skull or jaw fracture, or broken nose.
5. Paralysis of the Vocal Cords
Paralysis of the vocal cords results from an interruption of the nerve impulses in the larynx. The voice box or larynx, which contains the vocal cords, sits at the front of the neck. It allows you to swallow and talk. The larynx also serves as the entryway to the windpipe, so it also plays a crucial role in respiration.
When the vocal cords are paralyzed, it also affects a patient’s ability to speak and breathe. Besides producing sound, vocal cords safeguard the throat from saliva, food, or anything that causes a person to gag or choke. A chest or neck injury in a car crash can lead to vocal cord paralysis – a condition that typically is treated surgically.
A car accident, even if it is a small one, can set off a series of unexpected events, including chronic pain, lack of coordination, or breathing difficulties. Impact accidents can hurt your quality of life. That is why treating any resulting problems should be taken seriously.