People have many reasons for not seeking out care after being involved in an auto accident. Immediately after a car accident, there is always a “rush” of adrenaline. This can mask the pain of injuries that a driver or passenger experiences after an auto accident. People often experience pain after a motor vehicle collision (MVC) but assume it will just go away. They don’t get their back or neck assessed by a medical professional and that’s a mistake. Others may be experiencing neck pain, back pain, or headaches but decide “I can live with the pain”.
Also a mistake!
However, after a MVC, putting off any care you may need can result in prolonging the healing process. It can even affect your potential personal injury case should you need an attorney. This will make a bad situation worse. Should You See a Doctor After a Car Accident? If your injuries don’t get you to see a doctor right, the way insurance companies value your case should. After your accident you’ll be assigned a claims adjuster for your case. In reality, most of the insurance “adjusting” is done by a computer program. These programs use information about your accident and injuries to help calculate the value of your case.
Whether or not you’ve seen a doctor following your MVC is a very important part of getting a fair settlement. Most insurance companies consider 72 hours to be a reasonable amount of time to seek care. This means that for insurance purposes, you have 3 days to see a doctor after your accident. Waiting too long can cause a large enormous reduction in the compensation you are eligible to receive for your injuries. If you can’t get in with your primary care physician (PCP) within 3 days, you can visit an urgent care clinic. The benefit is you can be seen right away. You will probably pay more “out-of-pocket” for an appointment at one of these clinics than with your PCP. However, you can submit these bills to your insurer for compensation. Most insurers consider a chiropractor the same as a medical doctor if seen in the first 72 hours. Our preferred provider will work with attorneys on a lien so there is no out of pocket costs.
What If I Feel OK After The Accident?
While some injuries are obvious after a car accident, others can take days or weeks to show up. This doesn’t mean you should wait until symptoms show up to see a doctor. Our preferred provider will provide a FREE Accident Injury Evaluation following your accident. You should also re-visit your doctor if you start to have symptoms you didn’t notice before. Unfortunately, many of the most common injuries from that can be slow to show symptoms include brain injuries and soft tissue injuries, like whiplash and back pain. Traumatic Brain Injuries Traumatic brain injuries (aka concussions) occur when the brain is injured. In car accidents, this can result from “whiplash” injuries. This is defined by rapid flexion and then extension of the cervical spine (neck).
This motion can frequently cause the brain to hit the inside of the skull even if there was no direct impact to the head. Most car accidents are at least somewhat disorienting and few patients are familiar with concussion symptoms. Those signs can include: – Nausea – Headache – Balance Issues – Ringing in the Ears – Dizziness – Confusion – Amnesia – Momentary Loss of Consciousness If you are experiencing any of these symptoms after an accident, you may have a concussion, and you should discuss your symptoms with a doctor. If you saw a doctor but did not discuss the possibility of a concussion, do not hesitate to follow up with another appointment. Soft Tissue Injuries Another issue that can go undiagnosed for even longer is a soft tissue injury. These injuries affect the muscles, tendons, ligaments, and other soft tissues in the body. If left untreated, they can cause terrible pain and even mobility issues. Soft tissue injuries will not show up on an x-ray. That means even if you have already undergone an x-ray, you could have additional injuries lurking under the skin that your doctor did not notice. Symptoms may not show up for a few days, and can not be identified by the naked eye, so if you have experienced new symptoms after your initial doctor visit, you should go back for another appointment. Our preferred providers will be able to get any soft tissue injuries diagnosed. To ensure the best possible outcome of your care, you should see a doctor as soon as you can after a car accident Get Medical Attention Right Away Because the symptoms of soft tissue injuries and concussions can take several days to appear, seeing a doctor after your accident can be very important.
Seeing a doctor with experience treating soft tissue injuries is even more so. If you notice symptoms developing later, you can always make another appointment and submit the additional bills to your insurance company. Most importantly, make sure to schedule your first visit within 72 hours after your accident for insurance purposes. It is typically better to see a doctor multiple times than to lose out on the full amount of compensation you need and deserve for your injuries. However, even if you waited longer longer than 3 days to seek treatment, you can still recover compensation for your car accident injuries. Have You Been Injured in a Car Wreck? If you’ve been in an auto accident and need to find a whiplash doctor, contact one of our preferred providers for a FREE Auto Accident Injury Evaluation.