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How Do I Know If I am Injured After a Car Accident?

Upset woman sitting against a damaged car

After a car accident, you need to immediately check yourself for injuries. But not all injuries will be catastrophic injuries with obvious consequences, like an amputation or a deep laceration. In many cases, car accident survivors have subtle injuries that are not immediately apparent, especially when adrenaline is running high. How do you know if you have been injured after a car accident if your injuries are not clear and distinct?

The best way to find out if you have been hurt after a car accident is to go to an urgent care medical facility as soon as possible. Allow a medical professional to give you a full checkup, so they can provide a thorough diagnosis of your injuries. Using a series of basic-to-complicated diagnostic tests, the doctor might be able to reveal that you have more injuries than you first realized.

What is a Latent Injury?

Underlying injuries that get worse with time are sometimes called “latent injuries.” Car accident survivors can suffer a variety of latent injuries, from head injuries like mild concussions to soft tissue injuries like whiplash. No matter the type of latent injury, it is important to catch it early. The longer a latent injury goes untreated, the more likely it will worsen and cause further symptoms and side effects. For example, untreated whiplash can rapidly lead to complete next debilitation and the need for surgery.

Again, to catch a latent injury caused by a car accident, make your way to an urgent care center right away. If you are experiencing breathing difficulties or lost consciousness in your accident, then you should go to the emergency department.

The lesson about car accident injuries is that you should not self-diagnose. Leave your diagnosis up to a medical expert who can identify and explain your injuries with professional accuracy.