What to Expect Physically After a Car Accident and How to Recover

What to Expect Physically After a Car Accident and How to Recover

On average, there are approximately 6 million car accidents a year in the United States. That comes out to over 16,000 a day.

A lot goes through your head after you’ve been in a car accident. You’re worried about your car and your insurance rates. You’re glad that worse didn’t happen.

You might not be thinking much about the state of your body. If you’re in shock, you might even think you got out of the accident unscathed. However, in a couple of hours or days, uncomfortable symptoms can set in, and it’s best that you know what you’re experiencing before things get worse.

We’re here to talk about what to expect physically after a car accident and the steps you should take for a full recovery. Read on to find out more.

What to Expect Physically After a Car Accident

It’s not uncommon to feel sore after a car accident. The sudden jerks and bumps from the collision probably made your muscles tense up. But what about pain or discomfort that exceeds light soreness?


Whiplash is not uncommon after car crashes, especially if you were struck from the side or rear. Your neck muscles may have strained so much during the accident that you now have trouble turning your head. In some instances, what may at first appear to be severe whiplash can actually turn out to be a dislocation in the upper spine.

Facial or surface-level injuries 

Surface-level injuries can occur if your face or other body parts struck the steering wheel or other parts of the car. These are usually noticeable right away, especially if they cause bleeding or broken bones. However, you might also notice bruising or mild lacerations from your seatbelt.

Collarbone and rib injuries 

Collarbone and rib injuries can also result from the sudden weight of your body against the seatbelt. This is especially true if your seatbelt locked in response to the sudden motion, which most are designed to do.

Brain injuries and head trauma 

Brain injuries and head trauma can be hard to identify but should be taken very seriously. Concussions are not uncommon after bad car accidents. If you find that you are tired, dizzy, or nauseous in the days and weeks after the accident occurred, don’t write it off.

Spinal Cord Damage

Spinal cord damage occurs when the discs along your spine are dislocated or your backbones are fractured. Spinal cord injuries can be particularly traumatic, as they can lead to a permanent loss of feeling in the lower extremities.

Internal Injuries

Some internal injuries cause immediate, noticeable pain. However, you may not always feel that kind of damage right away. Untreated internal injuries can lead to internal bleeding.

Signs of internal bleeding include dizziness or fainting, abdominal pain or swelling, and even seizures.

How to Recover After a Car Accident

At the very least, you should take it easy in the days after a car accident. If you’ve endured minor injuries, you may want to take over the counter painkillers or hot baths for the pain. If you have any cuts or scrapes, make sure to clean and bandage them properly to avoid infection.

No matter what, it’s not a bad idea to see a doctor after a car accident. They will be able to check for things like concussions or internal injuries that you may not notice right away on your own.

For severe injuries, consider finding a doctor who specializes in post-accident treatment. Look for specialized medical care at Injured Call Today.

Don’t ignore any strange or unusual symptoms that you experience after a car accident. Seek treatment immediately.

Take Care of Yourself After Car Accident Trauma

Car accidents can damage your car, your wallet, your body, and your mental health. Know what to expect physically after a car accident and never hesitate to seek help after experiencing something traumatic.

For more on wellness, check out the rest of the tips and tricks on our blog. Self-care is an important part of the healing process.

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