Distracted driving is more of a problem every day. It is the cause of most rear-end car accidents. In the United States between 2012 and 2014, almost half of all collisions between two vehicles were rear-end collisions, according to the National Transportation Safety Board. An astounding eighty seven percent 87% of those accidents were caused by distracted driving.
The range of rear-end accidents vary from a minor accident that you don’t even pull over for to a major accident that causes serious injuries requiring you to be rushed to the hospital. Whether the rear car’s driver is distracted or speeding to cause the crash, it’s important to know what potential back and neck trauma you could suffer from in a rear-end accident.
What You Should Know About Back and Neck Injuries
Even though rear-end accidents can be caused by a car moving as slowly as five miles per hour, they can produce injuries that cause you problems you for the rest of your life. Back and neck injuries need to be taken seriously because they house the controllers of your body: the brain and spinal cord.
Whether your pain is minor or severe, you should seek immediate medical help for back and neck injuries because they can be life-altering. Here are some of the injuries that are possible after a rear-end collision:
- Whiplash. After someone runs into your rear bumper, your head might whip from front to back and damage the soft tissue, discs, and nerves in your neck. This is commonly known as whiplash and can be serious if not treated promptly. Sometimes whiplash goes untreated because the adrenaline from the accident masks the symptoms. If you feel neck stiffness, neck pain, or headaches, those could be signs that you have experienced whiplash, and you should see a medical professional.
- Traumatic brain injury. When you get a brain injury, you want to take it seriously so that it heals properly. Your brain controls everything you do, so a traumatic brain injury can negatively impact the rest of your life. A specific type of traumatic brain injury is a concussion, which is caused by the brain bouncing around inside the skull. Left untreated, concussions can affect your memory and other cognitive skills, so you should seek treatment immediately after a suspected brain injury.
- Slipped disc. Otherwise known as a herniated disc, a slipped disc is when the disc-like cushion between vertebrae moves out of place. This can happen at any point along the spine and can be incredibly painful. If you experience back pain, numbness, or weakness anywhere that connects to nerves in your back, then you could have a bulging disc.
- Fractured spine. A spinal fracture happens when a single vertebra or multiple vertebrae break. If the damage and pain are minor, then an immobilization brace is usually utilized to treat the injury. More severe fractures sometimes use the same treatment, but if the spinal cord is threatened, surgery could be required to keep the spine intact.
- Spinal cord injury. More serious than a fractured spine, a spinal cord injury is usually caused by a broken or dislocated vertebra that damages the spinal cord. When this happens, a person can experience severe pain, numbness in parts of their body, or even paralysis. If you think you have a spinal cord injury, it’s important that you stay as still as possible until medical personnel can help you. Moving around could cause even more harm.
Our Experienced Firm Can Help You
When a car accident leaves you severely injured, you may feel like you have no one to turn to. The experienced lawyers at Schweickert Ganassin Krzak Rundio, LLP can provide you with the legal representation you need during this difficult time. We can help you explore your options and decide the best course of action to take. For a free consultation, reach out to our office today.