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What to Expect After a Car Accident

What happens after an accident always interrupts your normal routine and everyday life. It's important to understand that saving money until this resolves will help you make it through your recovery. Here's what you can expect after a car accident.

Immediately After the Accident

Immediately following, you'll be calling 911 and checking yourself and your passengers for injuries. When law enforcement gives the go-ahead, you'll exchange insurance information and fill out any forms they require. You or your loved ones may end up arriving at the nearest medical urgent care or emergency facility. Once at the medical facility, you may end up being treated for injuries, which may take several hours. Depending upon the type of injuries you suffered, you may need surgery. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says there are around 38,000 surgeons actively working in the United States. That's good news if you need emergency help.

In the First Week

The first week after a car accident can be hectic. You'll be making extra phone calls to your insurance company, working with doctor appointments, and trying to shuffle things at work so you can attempt to recover. Many people will notice bruising within this timeframe. Bruises do not always manifest right away.

Loss of Transportation and Wages

Some people may spend extra money getting to and from work while their car is in the shop. They may have to take public transportation, hire a taxi, or ride with a friend. These costs and additional arrangements can be expensive and time-consuming. In addition to the time loss impacting your day, you'll find you're going to feel the stress of the lost wages. If you have enough vacation or sick time to cover it and your recovery is short, you may not feel the impact as much. However, you'll find that insurance companies aren't too keen to reimburse you for this loss of transportation and wages without the assistance of a personal injury attorney.

From a legal standpoint, car accidents are the source of most personal injury cases. You might be wondering if you should contact an attorney. The answer depends on how severe your injuries are, how much work you've lost, and whether the accident was your fault or not. In all cases where the accident was not your fault, yes, you should contact an attorney for assistance.

Injuries May Manifest Later

Many injuries from a car accident do not manifest until sometime after the accident occurs. You can experience random or consistent headaches, severe muscle spasms, migraines, blurry vision, and other bodily pain. Others may experience numbness that comes and goes or a tingly feeling in the arms or legs. You might also find you experience anxiety, develop depression, or even post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) from the ordeal. It's vital to speak with your doctor or a chiropractor about your symptoms. Some injuries are subtle but wreak havoc when left untreated.

Best Ways to Recover

In the days and weeks following your accident, you'll want to focus on recovering as well as possible. You should stay hydrated, follow your doctor's wishes regarding exercise, sleep requirements, physical therapy, medication, and other recommendations. Try to avoid additional life stressors whenever possible.

Paperwork Piles Will Grow

You'll get forms to fill out from insurance companies, new entries into your medical records, and statements and estimates from auto body shops. Each year in the U.S, there are around 6 million car accidents. Major body damage is caused by high-speed collisions, minor fender benders, weather-related issues, and negligence. Because of this and medical injuries, you'll notice that your stacks of papers begin to grow. You'll want to keep copies of all documents you send or receive to doctors' offices, chiropractors, and medical staff.

It's an unfortunate experience to have gotten into a car accident. Your work, life, and livelihood have been disrupted. You may have a long road to physical and financial recovery. Working with a car accident lawyer can help ease some of those burdens.


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