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Risks increase when you forgo a doctor visit after an accident

With some types of injuries, you know immediately you need serious medical care. However, many other kinds of injuries may have severe long-term consequences without necessarily resulting in immediate symptoms.

Seeing a doctor as soon as possible after a car accident - even if you think it was minor - can help you get the right treatment when you need it. A prompt checkup can also help you get an accurate diagnosis in time so you can file your claim before the statute of limitations runs out.

Invisible injuries

Many kinds of traumatic injuries can be invisible at first. You may leave the accident scene thinking you did not suffer an injury at all. You may write off any soreness or other discomfort as minor. However, without a thorough examination by a physician, you could be overlooking some grave issues.

Traumatic brain injury

One type of injury that does not always make itself known immediately is traumatic brain injury. While severe TBI typically results in prolonged loss of consciousness at the accident scene and other hard-to-miss symptoms, mild TBI is frequently overlooked at first.

Symptoms of mild TBI can look like minor ailments that generally do not elicit concern. Common signs include nausea, headaches, irritability, mood swings and fatigue. Some also experience blurred vision, ringing or buzzing in the ears, difficulty focusing and slight impairments to speech, motion or memory. To complicate matters further, some people experience one of these symptoms, while others may suffer from several. Symptoms can begin manifesting within hours, days and even weeks of the initial trauma.

Consequences

Even mild TBI or other trauma can have serious long-term consequences that can affect your quality of life, necessitate treatment and decrease your earning capacity. Ignoring symptoms can delay your diagnosis and potentially shut down the possibility of recovering your losses via a lawsuit.

If you are a victim of a car crash, keep an eye out for any changes in your health, no matter how minor they may seem. See a doctor for a comprehensive examination, making sure to bring any changes you notice to his or her attention.

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