Car crashes can cause many different kinds of injuries, and most of them are obvious. If you break your leg, you won’t be able to walk away from the crash. If you hurt your spinal cord, you may not be able to move at all.
However, if you hurt your brain, it could be days before you notice symptoms. Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) often get worse over time if the person injured doesn’t receive medical intervention.
Ignoring signs that you may have hurt your brain in a car crash could complicate your insurance claims and lead to a worse medical outcome. There is one warning sign that drivers should never ignore after even a low-speed collision.
Loss of consciousness is a major warning sign
Blunt force trauma or violent motion can damage your brain, causing swelling and bleeding. Often, the first symptom someone has of a brain injury after a car crash is a momentary loss of consciousness.
Someone might black out for a few seconds after their vehicle flips over or lose consciousness for a minute after hitting their head on the steering wheel. Any temporary loss of consciousness is a possible sign of a brain injury.
Given how severe these injuries can be when left untreated, drivers should err on the side of caution. Seeking medical evaluation shortly after a crash can help you diagnose a TBI and get treatment so that it doesn’t have worsening symptoms over the next few days. An individual does not need to black out for a long time or be unable to stay awake for their loss of consciousness to be an indicator of a potential brain injury.
The problem with ignoring brain injuries
As previously mentioned, brain injuries can progress if someone doesn’t get treatment. If there is still bleeding or swelling taking place, the injury may get worse over several days. Existing symptoms may get worse, or someone may develop completely new symptoms.
The medical consequences are bad enough on their own, but delayed treatment also causes financial issues. Insurance companies may have an easier time denying coverage for crash-related medical care when someone doesn’t get diagnosed right away after a wreck.
Recognizing the signs of traumatic brain injuries after car crashes can help protect your health and your financial stability.