Getting in a car accident can ruin your day. However, the long-term effect of an auto accident on your body extends far beyond the day of the accident. Knowing what to do after an accident can help you be prepared to take action and put yourself on a path to recovery.
What Should You Do After a Car Accident?
Immediately following the accident, talk to the other driver involved (if the accident involved multiple cars) and exchange insurance information.
If possible, it is often a good idea to call the police so that a formal police report is filed for the accident. This can be helpful for your insurance company and creates a proper account of how the accident occurred that can be referenced in the future if necessary.
After leaving the accident site, you should file a claim with your auto insurance company. You will be given a claim number and other billing information, and the process of getting both you and your vehicle repaired will now be underway.
What Happens to Your Body in a Car Accident
Because car accidents are uniquely complicated and involve many body parts, some patients do not experience symptoms until a few days after the accident. Your adrenaline is often elevated immediately following the accident, which can distract you from recognizing the pain you are in.
Even if you are personally feeling fine immediately following an accident, tell your auto insurance company you plan to see a doctor for an evaluation. Injuries after car accidents are very common. In 2021 the National Safety Council estimated there were 5.4 million motor-vehicle accidents that resulted in medical visits.
In a car accident, you and your vehicle are moving at high speeds, and then come to an abrupt stop. The force of this impact can cause one or more common injuries:
– Neck injuries: Commonly caused by whiplash
– Back pain: Resulting from the sudden impact
– Headaches: These could be warning signs of a concussion
– Hip pain: Often most noticeable when walking, running, or sitting
– Chest pain: Noticeable when taking deep breaths
Who Should You See After a Car Accident?
It is always a good idea to plan to have yourself examined following a car accident as a precaution.
The chiropractic team at Integracare has treated thousands of patients in central Minnesota after their car accidents. With over 50 years of combined experience, our providers understand the complexities of car accident injuries.
Additionally, the physical therapy and medical care also available at Integracare make the clinic an ideal care location for patients recovering from car accidents.
What Should You Do if the Car Accident Was Not Your Fault?
Minnesota is a “no-fault” state. This means you submit all of your claims to your auto insurance, even if you were not at fault for the accident. As claims are submitted, your insurance company will “fight it out” with the other driver’s insurance company to determine fault and how expenses should be handled. This is where having a formal police report on file can be very helpful to reference back to.
If your claim is denied by your auto insurance company, you should receive written correspondence stating why. If you feel your auto insurance company is treating you unfairly, it may be necessary to seek legal help. If this happens to you, speak to your care provider. They may know a lawyer or law firm that has helped some of their other patients successfully.