Neck and back injuries are common in car accidents, and they are often debilitating for crash victims. The effects of neck and back injuries can haunt an accident victim for years, with expensive medical bills, time off work, and ongoing pain.
Accident victims can hold negligent drivers and their insurance companies liable for paying full compensation for losses related to neck and back injuries. At Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard, P.C., our traffic collision lawyers have earned a reputation for maximizing results for crash victims who are coping with long-term, serious neck and back injuries. Contact us now to schedule a free consultation and learn about your legal rights after a crash.
How Car Accidents Cause Neck and Lower Back Pain
The reason neck and back injuries are so common is that car accidents cause the body to absorb an immense amount of force. The back and neck are very sensitive to sudden movements and force. When a vehicle crashes, the inertia causes the driver and passengers to move in the same direction that the car was hit. Seatbelts, air bags, and even the car door or dashboard will cause the body’s movement to stop short, placing a sudden and enormous amount of pressure on the victim’s back and neck.
The spine is not built to withstand the force and pressure exerted on it during a car accident, which can result in a range of injuries in the event of a crash.
Common Causes of Neck and Lower Back Pain After a Car Accident
Due to the fact that neck and lower back pain injuries are not as clearly visible as other injuries, such as broken bones, victims often do not know what is causing their pain after a car accident. This is why it is crucial to seek medical treatment as soon as possible.
The most common causes of neck and lower back pain after a crash include:
- Whiplash: Whiplash is one of the most common causes of neck pain after a car accident. Most commonly caused by rear-end crashes, whiplash occurs any time the neck moves back and forth in rapid succession while the body remains still. This causes extensive damage to the discs and nerves within the neck and can take months to recover from.
- Lumbar sprains and strains: Lumbar strains occur in the lower back as a result of excessive force placed on the area during a crash. Strains affect muscles and tendons. Lumbar sprains occur when the ligaments in the back are stretched beyond their regular range of motion.
- Spinal stenosis: Medically speaking, the term stenosis indicates a body channel that has abnormally narrowed. When this occurs in the spine, it typically means that the spinal cord and nerves are being put under pressure, usually because a ruptured disc or bone fragment has narrowed the spinal canal.
- Disc herniation: Another extremely common injury after a car crash, when a disc herniates, the soft gel-like filling within the disc protrudes through its tough outer shell. These injuries are extremely painful and can take months to recover from.
- Joint injuries: These injuries include strained, sprained, fractured, and dislocated joints in the back or neck. The symptoms associated with these injuries vary depending on the type of injury but commonly include swelling, difficulty moving, or visible displacement or broken joints.
- Spinal cord injuries: The spine can sustain a great number of injuries including herniated or ruptured discs and even paralysis.
All of these injuries are not only extremely painful, but they take a long time to recover from. Meanwhile, accident victims usually cannot return to work right away and face mounting medical bills due to the treatment they have received. This is why if you have suffered a neck or lower back injury in a car accident, you should seek legal advice as soon as possible to understand your right to compensation.
What If My Pain Was Delayed?
Even if you did not go to the emergency room or urgent care immediately after your crash, you should seek medical treatment as soon as you experience pain in the neck or back area. Be sure to tell your doctor that you were involved in a crash, and follow your treatment plan. You should also start a journal to document your injuries, the pain you are experiencing, and how it is affecting your everyday life.
Not all injuries are immediately apparent after a car accident. A person who sustained whiplash during a car crash, for example, may not exhibit any symptoms until days or weeks after a car accident. This is why it is crucial that anyone involved in a collision seeks treatment immediately after the crash. Seeking treatment will ensure your injuries are properly diagnosed and treated, and it will ensure your injuries are documented from the outset.
Talk to Our Chicago Back and Neck Injury Car Accident Lawyers Now
Back and neck injuries are not only some of the most common injuries sustained during a car crash, but they are also some of the most debilitating. If you have suffered these types of injuries due to another driver’s negligence, our Chicago car accident lawyers are here to help. At Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard, P.C., we understand the personal injury claims process and will fight for the full amount of compensation you deserve. Call us today or contact us online to schedule a free consultation with one of our knowledgeable car accident attorneys. We can answer all your questions and help you understand your next steps.