Automobile injuries are a major cause of emergency room visits in the United States, causing Americans to spend more than one million days in the hospital each year. If you have been in a car accident, no matter how small, it’s always important to get checked by a doctor. Knowing what types of injuries to look for can help you determine the severity of the situation.
5 Common Automobile Injuries
1. Neck & Back Injuries
Whiplash is probably the best known of all automobile injuries. This occurs when an impact—often a rear-end collision—causes the head and neck to quickly jerk forward, stretching the muscles and ligaments in this area. The force of a crash can also damage the spine, for instance, causing misalignment of vertebrae.
2. Head Trauma
Trauma to the head can result in open wounds as well as internal injuries. The latter, a so-called “closed” head injury, occurs when the fluid and tissue inside the skull are hurt by sudden impact. This can lead to concussion and potentially permanent brain damage if not treated promptly.
3. Broken Bones
Depending on the nature of the incident, you can break any type of bone in a car accident. Ribs can get broken due to a deployed airbag, for instance—while toes can suffer damage if crushed by a heavy car part. Compound fractures, in which a bone splinters into several pieces and pierces the skin or even surrounding organs, are especially dangerous.
4. Chest Injuries
A serious blow to the chest is common in a car accident. In a rapid collision you may even see bruising from where your seatbelt held you in place. In more serious cases, chest injuries may also be internal, impacting the ribs or organs.
5. Scrapes, Cuts, & Bruises
From the force of a deployed airbag to shattered glass, many elements of a car crash can cause scrapes, cuts, and bruises. If cuts are bleeding profusely, stitches may be required. Even if you only have some scratches following an auto accident, it’s imperative to see a medical professional. Certain injuries, like concussion or whiplash, may not show symptoms immediately.
Depending on the nature of your automobile injuries, your doctor may recommend visiting a chiropractor to aid your recovery and promote pain relief. North Pole Chiropractic in Alaska provides massage therapy and chiropractic health services for individuals hurt in car crashes. Find out more about their work in the field online. For an appointment, call (907) 488-1885.