When you get into a car accident, chances are you may suffer some sort of injury. While not all injuries are serious, some may be life-changing or even fatal.
However, there are some injuries that may be more common than others. Here are some of the most common car accident injuries and their potential severity.
Common Injuries from a Car Accident
There are a variety of common car accident injuries that victims may sustain depending on the circumstances. Each of these injuries comes with different challenges and medical costs.
Soft Tissue Injuries
One of the most common car accident injuries is soft tissue damage. This includes any damaging impacts to the ligaments, tendons, and muscles. In most car accidents, this usually results in large bruises.
However, other soft tissue injuries may be more severe like whiplash, sprains, or strains. Despite being less serious than other types of injuries, soft tissue damage may lead to a lifelong range of mobility difficulties.
During a car accident, it’s common for sharp objects like glass or metal to fly around the car. This debris may cause anything from minor cuts to severe lacerations that may need stitches or even surgery.
In some scenarios, lacerations may be life-threatening due to excessive blood loss. While not always a cause of permanent disability, severe lacerations may lead to disfigurement.
Dislocations & Fractures
Since cars compress when they collide with other vehicles, it’s common for victims to have bone dislocations or fractures. The areas of the body most susceptible to this type of injury are the ankles, wrists, arms, legs, and ribs.
Simple breaks or dislocations may only require a cast, while compound fractures may need extensive surgery.
Unfortunately, the compound breaks often result in permanent strength and mobility issues. In addition, victims may experience chronic pain around the surgical site due to the plates and screws used to rebuild the bone.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Injuries to the spine or back are some of the most serious injuries possible in a car accident. The spine isn’t designed to take the forceful impacts associated with a car accident.
As a result, victims with back injuries like slipped or ruptured disks have long-lasting complications with posture, movement, and pain.
In more serious cases, a fractured spine may lead to the development of paraplegia or quadriplegia. These injuries usually require lifelong care, resulting in extensive future medical costs for the victim and their family.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Also known as TBIs, traumatic brain injuries are the most deadly injuries associated with car accidents. According to the CDC, more than 61,000 people died from a traumatic brain injury in the United States in 2019.
While most of these deaths happened due to slip and falls, a large portion occurred in motor vehicle accidents.
Concussions are by far the most common TBI associated with car accidents. However, more severe brain injuries like contusions often have long-term effects.
This includes chronic headaches, insomnia, extreme mood swings, cognitive disability, and reduced mobility.
In car accidents, it’s possible for a finger, toe, arm, or other appendages to be severed. In addition, a limb may become so severely damaged that it requires surgical amputation.
Unfortunately, complications don’t always stop after surgery or rehabilitation. Phantom limb pain may be long lasting, and replacement prosthetic devices often carry a high cost.
For this reason, amputations are some of the hardest injuries to recover from after an accident.
Car accidents are an incredibly traumatic experience, especially when they result in injury. Many victims often have flashbacks, guilt, or other mental stresses afterward.
In some cases, victims may be diagnosed with a mental health condition such as PTSD or depression, that makes daily routines difficult.
How to Minimize the Risk of Common Car Accident Injuries
While it’s not possible to control every driver on the road, there are a few ways to avoid common car accident injuries and symptoms.
First, always wear your seatbelt. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, seatbelts save almost 15,000 lives every year in the US. In addition, 47% of all passengers who died in 2019 weren’t wearing a seatbelt.
Second, make sure you follow the speed limit. Generally, crashes that happen at higher speeds result in more severe injuries. By obeying the speed limit, you reduce the chance of a serious crash.
Finally, keep your vehicle in working order. Be sure to check your brakes and airbags regularly, as these parts may be vital in the event of an accident.
How Our Attorneys Can Help After a Car Accident
If you have sustained injuries in a car accident, don’t try to go through the claims process on your own. At River Run Law, we know that there may be several Virginia car accident lawyers to choose from.
That’s why we focus on providing a personalized, honest experience. We can help negotiate on your behalf, gather evidence, and answer any questions you may have.
To schedule a free consultation, contact us online or give us a call. We welcome clients throughout the state of Virginia.