delayed injury

Delayed Injuries from a Car Accident

People often expect car accidents to be far more dramatic than they really are. They might expect all injuries to be immediately obvious—and some, like broken bones or lacerations, are. However, there are many injuries that may take time to show up. These injuries are often severe or fatal, leaving victims at risk of dying or living with symptoms for the rest of their lives. That’s why, even if you feel fine at the scene of a car accident, it’s important to seek medical care and keep an eye on potential symptoms.

Have you suffered injuries in a car accident? You might be entitled to compensation. Learn more now by calling Turner, Onderdonk, Kimbrough, Howell, Huggins & Bradley at 251-847-2237 (Chatom) or 251-651-0483 (Bay Minette).

How Long Does It Take for Symptoms to Appear?

Accident victims may think they are in the clear if they can walk away from an accident with only minor aches and pains. However, many symptoms take up to 24 hours to appear. Some may even appear days after an accident. It is crucial to keep a close eye on your pain levels and overall sense of wellbeing as you recover from a crash, as a quick response time to any unexpected symptoms can truly save your life.

Several symptoms could be indicative of a delayed injury. Some of the most common include:

Back and Neck Pain

Car crashes put an excessive amount of strain on your back and neck. You may only feel mild pain immediately after the crash, due to the adrenaline surge that happens when you crash. As that adrenaline wears off, though, you may start to feel the full effects of your injury. Your back may be affected by a herniated disc, spinal cord injury, or muscle sprain. The neck, which often suffers an enormous amount of force in a crash, can be affected by whiplash or a spinal cord injury.


Headaches are a worrisome symptom after a car accident, since they can be caused by minor injuries and severe or fatal injuries. Headaches that go away on their own are often nothing to worry about, but headaches that persist or get worse with time may be indicative of a deeper problem.

Possible diagnoses include a brain bleed, a hematoma, a concussion, or a traumatic brain injury. With traumatic brain injuries, your outcome is partially determined by how quickly you receive care. It’s crucial to seek medical care as soon as possible after a car accident to give yourself the best chance at a full recovery.

Numbness and Tingling

Numbness and tingling in the neck or extremities may be indicative of nerve damage. In the neck, numbness and tingling are often signs of whiplash. This sensation may extend down through the upper back. You may also feel these sensations in your fingers or feet if there is nerve damage to your arms or legs. Regardless of where numbness and tingling strike, it’s recommended that you get your symptoms checked by a doctor as soon as possible.

Changes in Speech or Behavior

Traumatic brain injuries manifest in a number of different ways, including changes in behavior, changes in speech patterns, and out-of-control emotions. Unexpected bursts of anger, inappropriate laughter or vocalization, or fatigue may all be indicative of a traumatic brain injury. Report any changes that you notice or that your friends and family notice.

Abdominal Pain and Bruising

These symptoms are extremely dangerous, as they are often indicative of internal bleeding. When you bleed internally, blood fills up your body cavities and causes pain, bruising, fatigue, and paleness. You may also notice deep purple bruising appearing on your abdomen in the hours or days after an accident. These symptoms warrant immediate emergency medical care.

Turn to Turner, Onderdonk, Kimbrough, Howell, Huggins & Bradley Today

A car accident can completely change your life, which is why it’s important to explore your legal options as soon as possible. The team at Turner, Onderdonk, Kimbrough, Howell, Huggins & Bradley is here to help with your personal injury needs. Take the first step now by calling us at 251-847-2237 (Chatom) or 251-651-0483 (Bay Minette) or getting in touch with our team online. We’ll take a look at your claim and help you plan your next move.

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