The moments after a car accident can be frightening and overwhelming. Even as the vehicles are coming to a stop, many people have a variety of thoughts racing through their heads, all at the same time. Is everyone okay? Is anyone injured? Am I hurt?
While you are taking stock of your situation following a crash, you should, of course, check yourself for injuries, keeping in mind that injuries are not always immediately apparent. Car accident victims may suffer whiplash, damage to soft tissue, concussions, spinal injuries, broken bones, and other serious injuries that may not become obvious for several hours or even days after the accident. Many of those who are involved in a car accident are quick to conclude that they are not injured, but these assumptions can be dangerous.
Fight or Flight Hormones Mask Pain
It is estimated that as many as 50 million Americans are injured in car accidents each year, many of whom did not immediately realize that they were hurt. This can sometimes be caused by a hormone called adrenaline. Adrenaline—also called epinephrine—floods a person’s bloodstream following a car accident or other distressing event. The “fight or flight” hormone raises the person’s heart rate, increases blood pressure, expands the air passages of the lungs, increases the production of sweat, and dilates the pupils to help prepare the individual to face the hazardous circumstances being presented.
Adrenaline can also block the pain sensations. The phenomenon can be dangerously deceptive – especially after a car accident. This can fool a person into thinking they are not hurt when they actually are. Adrenaline can deaden pain and cause an injured person to cause additional injury by continuing to move around following an accident and putting off seeking medical care.
It is imperative that people involved in serious car accidents be evaluated by medical professionals even if they do not believe their injuries are severe. A comprehensive medical exam can also strengthen your ability to collect damages from the person who caused your accident. If you do not immediately think you are injured following an accident but begin to feel pain a few days later, insurance companies may claim that the pain is unrelated to the accident and therefore try to avoid liability.
We Can Help
If you or a loved one has been involved in an auto accident and you believe the other driver should be responsible for the losses you have suffered, contact an experienced San Jose car accident attorney. We will work with you in helping you obtain the full compensation you deserve. Call 408-293-7777 for a free consultation today.
While this website provides general information, it does not constitute legal advice. The best way to get guidance on your specific legal issue is to contact a lawyer. To schedule a meeting with the attorney, please call at 408-293-7777 or complete the intake form below.