Yes. You should definitely see a doctor after being in a car accident. If you think you don’t need to see a doctor after your car accident for any of the following reasons:

  • You feel fine
  • It was a minor accident
  • There was no property damage or significant property damage
  • Nobody was physically harmed or appeared to suffer significant injuries
  • Nobody mentioned filing a lawsuit

-you’re wrong.

It is in your best interest to see a doctor as soon as possible after your car accident because:

  • Your physical health matters.
  • Some physical injuries do not surface until well after the car accident occurred
  • Seeing a doctor within a reasonable time may be instrumental to your personal injury claim

Your Physical Health Matters…and Your Mental Health Too!

Car accidents are traumatizing. The adrenaline you likely experience in the moment coupled with lacking visible signs of significant injury will have you sincerely believing that you’ve escaped with a clean bill of physical health.

However, that may not be the case. While you’re certainly lucky to have walked away from the scene of the accident breathing, you should probably go one step further and get a clean bill of health from a licensed medical professional. Get a physical check-up so you can be certain you’re okay.

While you’re at it, perhaps take an additional step and do a mental health check-up to make sure that you aren’t experiencing post-traumatic stress as a result of the car accident. Take care of your physical health and mental health – take care of you.

Hidden Injuries

The symptoms of several types of injuries do not manifest right after a car accident. That’s why it’s imperative that you get a check-up as soon as reasonably possible. Some types of injuries that may take a while to surface are:

  • Soft Tissue Injuries: These injuries affect ligaments, tendons, and muscles and if left untreated will cause severe pain. Some examples of soft tissue injuries are bruises, sprains, and muscle contusions.

  • Sprains, Strains, and Fractures: Often associated with injuries to the back or neck, sprains and fractures may be hard to detect because the soreness caused by these types of injuries may be confused with being banged and bruised from the car accident. One of the most commonly known injuries related to a car accident is whiplash. Whiplash can cause injuries that involve your muscles, discs, nerves, and tendons in your neck.

  • Concussions: A concussion is a traumatic brain injury cause by a blow, bump or similar impact to the head. It may also be caused by an impact to the body that causes the head and brain to rapidly move back and forth. The symptoms of a concussion do not show up immediately. If left untreated, a concussion can cause memory problems, personality changes, and depression.

Your Personal Injury Claim

Try to see a doctor within 72 hours of your car accident as this is the timeframe generally considered reasonable by insurance providers. While it may not be apparent right after your car accident, if your injuries manifest down the line and you want to file a claim, whether or not you saw a doctor within a reasonable time from your car accident will likely be crucial to the success of your claim.

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