Given that the average person gets into a car accident every 18 years, there will be a few times in your life when you’ll have to deal with pain after one. Car accident symptoms look different for everyone, so make sure that you’re listening to your body and considering what changes are happening. Delayed shock after a car accident is common and you need to prepare yourself for issues.

Here are five tips for dealing with car accident symptoms.

1. Don’t Underestimate Your Injuries

When you’ve been injured in a car accident, you need to take your condition seriously. It’s easy for people to assume that their injuries are less intense than they really are. The fact is that the pain we feel isn’t always analogous to the amount of injury we’re suffering. 

If you know that you’re injured, don’t live in denial about it. You need to get help. If you didn’t visit the doctor immediately after your accident, you need to do that now.

The longer you wait to have your problems diagnosed and treated, the longer it could take for you to recover. When you’re dealing with car accident symptoms, you could be dealing with internal injuries that will only be exacerbated by walking or movement you should avoid.

Take your own pain seriously and assume that your injuries are substantial. There’s no penalty for overestimating your injuries but there surely are for underestimating them.

2. Avoid Stress and Exercise

If you’re a gym rat or just love a casual run a few times a week, it’s going to be hard for you to break your regimen. However, if you run on a broken or injured limb, you run the risk of turning a light sprain or slight fracture into a total breakage. When you break a limb completely, it causes serious pain and could take months to heal.

You might never get back to the place you were if you don’t avoid harming yourself now.

If you work a physically demanding job, then you need to avoid taking on any serious work for a while. If you’re on your feet all day and you’ve harmed your feet or legs, then you need to find another way to work. It’s totally reasonable and your legal right to ask your employer to find work for you to do while you’re in recovery.

Major stress or strenuous exercise draws blood to different parts of your body. If you’ve had surgery or have injured yourself, you don’t want to change your blood pressure. It could result in busting open a scar or popping one of your stitches.

3. Take Note of New Symptoms

You need to listen closely to your body when you’re recovering from an accident. There are new symptoms that arise all the time while you’re in the middle of recovery, but they’re not all bad. While something is healing, you might notice it in a more substantial way than you did before.

If you feel new symptoms, take them seriously. Don’t ignore anything that your body is telling you.

When symptoms arise, assume that they’re serious and substantial and make note of them. If you see a pattern, call a doctor and see what they recommend. While they can’t usually give you care over the phone, they can recommend some changes to the way you’re doing things until you get into the office.

Visit your doctor liberally when you’ve been in a car accident. If you didn’t get scanned, you could be suffering from serious problems that may not reveal themselves for a while.

Call a car accident lawyer if you’re having trouble paying for doctors.

4. Talk About Therapy

When you talk to your doctor about what’s happening with you, put all options on the table. Talk to them openly about different kinds of therapy. Open yourself up to the possibility that you’ve hurt yourself to a degree where you need some kind of rehabilitation.

Occupational or physical therapy could be valuable depending on the injury or the type of work that you do. If you are open to trying these out, you could find them deeply restorative.

Some people who’ve been in a car accident even go so far as to try out new types of exercise like yoga. Taking on some types of medication and stretching is a great way to calm down and to reconnect with your body. This is a type of therapy that’s often overlooked.

If you’re having trouble recovering psychologically, don’t be shy about it. Some people avoid getting behind the wheel for months or even years after a serious accident. If this is the case, find ways to support your mental health with therapy.

5. Take Breaks When Needed

Ultimately, your body is going to communicate with you about its limits. You’ll find that your body is going to let you know when you need a break. Rather than pushing yourself past these limits, take a break when it’s time.

If you need a day off of work because of pain or soreness, then take it. Whenever possible, listen to your body and give yourself the time and space that you need.

Even if you’re normally comfortable doing what you were doing when you felt pain, just take a short break and move in a different way. You might find that just moving your body differently or sitting down briefly could relax you and set you back into a better place.

Car Accident Symptoms Will Vary

If you’re dealing with a wide variety of car accident symptoms, you might not know which ones are serious. Stay in conversation with your doctor to ensure you’re on top of what’s going on with your body.

For the most common types of injuries that follow a car accident, check out our latest guide.

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