A car accident is a sudden and often traumatic event that can have far-reaching consequences. In Alabama, car accidents resulted in over 900 deaths in 2020, with 75% of the crashes occurring in urban neighborhoods and 62% of crash-related fatalities occurring in rural areas.
While immediate injuries and property damage are the most obvious effects, a car accident can also have long-term impacts on your physical, emotional, and financial well-being. Understanding these potential effects of car accidents can help you take steps to protect yourself and prepare for the future.
The immediate effects of a car accident can range from minor cuts and bruises to severe shock and trauma. Common injuries and trauma that occur include:
Physical damage in car accidents often includes broken bones, lacerations, head trauma, and spine and back injuries. Individuals need immediate medical attention following a car accident to avoid long-term complications and infection.
The sudden shock of a car accident can cause emotional distress. Immediately following a car accident, you may feel emotions such as:
These emotions, along with your physical injuries, may cause sleep problems and digestive issues. They can also interfere with your ability to work or enjoy normal activities in the weeks or months following the collision.
Immediate financial expenses after a car accident can include repairing or replacing your damaged vehicle, ranging from $150 for a seat belt repair to $7,500 for an engine replacement.
Expenses also include medical bills for your injuries and towing and storage fees. These costs can quickly add up and strain your finances, adding to emotional worries in the aftermath of a crash.
Your immediate injuries may also prevent you from returning to work for several days or weeks, resulting in lost wages.
As the initial effects of a car crash wear off, you may experience severe long-term effects from your experience and injuries. These effects include physical and psychological consequences, such as chronic pain and PTSD.
Around 32.3% of road accident survivors report suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), 17.4% experienced depression, and 5.8% reported feeling anxious. These issues can negatively affect your daily life and ability to work, socialize, and maintain relationships.
The psychological and emotional long-term effects can impair your ability to enjoy life or maintain important relationships with your family, friends, and coworkers. Depression can cause you to feel hopeless about your situation and prevent you from engaging in activities you used to enjoy.
PTSD from a car accident may leave you with long-lasting cognitive consequences, such as flashbacks, anxiety, nightmares, or avoidance behaviors. You may also experience a loss of self-esteem, mood swings, or irritability, preventing you from living as you did before the accident.
Long-term physical effects include chronic pain, limited mobility, and permanent disability. Some injuries, such as spinal cord damage or traumatic brain injury, may have permanent effects and typically require medical attention and rehabilitation.
Limited mobility and chronic pain can result in a reduced quality of life. It can also prevent you from participating in social activities and increase your dependence on others.
In Alabama, individuals dealing with the long-term effects of a car accident have access to various resources and support systems. These resources can help you recover physically, mentally, and financially.
Therapy and counseling are available through local organizations such as the Alabama Psychological Association and the National Center for PTSD. These organizations can put you in contact with therapists experienced in managing anxiety, depression, and PTSD caused by car accidents and chronic pain from accident-related injuries.
Support groups, such as the Alabama Head Injury Foundation, provide a place to connect with others who have experienced similar challenges. The Brain Injury Association of America also offers numerous online and in-person support options for people with long-term traumatic brain injuries.
Rehabilitation programs, including the University of Alabama at Birmingham Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation and Montgomery Physical Therapy and Sports Medicine, offer comprehensive care to help individuals recover from physical injuries.
Rehabilitation often includes remedial massage, spinal traction, lumbar stabilization, or occupational therapy. These therapies can help minimize chronic pain, improve your range of motion, and help you perform daily activities.
To receive financial compensation for your losses, you need an experienced personal injury lawyer to help you navigate Alabama’s legal system. The personal injury attorneys at The Vance Law Firm Injury Lawyers can help you calculate the full extent of damages you’ve sustained. These include medical expenses, property damages, lost wages, therapy expenses, and other costs related to the accident.
Managing the long-term effects of a car accident requires a multi-faceted approach that addresses your physical, emotional, and financial well-being. The Alabama auto accident attorneys with The Vance Law Firm Injury Lawyers are skilled in helping car crash victims receive compensation for their immediate and long-term damages.
We provide valuable support and guidance in navigating the claims process and will protect your rights and interests to help you get a fair settlement. Contact us to schedule a complimentary case review.