What happens to your body in a car accident? The answer is complicated and depends on many factors, including the nature of the crash itself. Even riding in a car with the best safety features may not be enough the shield your body from the harsh force of impact in a collision.
At Christensen Law, we know that a traffic crash can cause victims immense physical and emotional pain. Our goal is to help injured people recover the financial compensation they need to treat their injuries and move forward in life. If you’ve been hurt, working with a Michigan car accident lawyer may give you the best opportunity to obtain the money you deserve.
Christensen Law is a trusted personal injury law firm with a reputation for excellence and a proven track record of success. Our attorneys have recovered millions of dollars in compensation for injured people. Call or contact us today for a free consultation.
Physical Consequences of Car Accidents
Most people know a car accident is a violent event. Traffic collisions involve a tremendous amount of force, which can cause immediate bodily injuries and trigger internal responses that lead to health complications.
Beyond physical injuries, crashes can also lead to chemical changes within the body. Learning about these shifts can help victims recognize when they may be experiencing symptoms of an injury that wasn’t apparent at first. It’s critical to seek medical attention as soon as you notice signs of a possible injury.
Here’s what can happen to your body in a car accident:
- Adrenaline release – Adrenaline is a chemical that helps your body respond to stress and triggers the fight-or-flight response. It works by shutting down non-essential body functions. An adrenaline rush can increase your heart rate, make you feel stronger, and decrease your sensitivity to pain.
- Endorphin production – Endorphins are hormones that block pain signals and help the body and mind react to stress.
The physical consequences of a car accident will also depend on whether you wore a seat belt. Buckling up can reduce your chances of suffering traumatic injuries by preventing your body from colliding with other objects in the vehicle’s cabin, such as the windshield or steering column. A seat belt may also prevent you from being thrown from the car.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that between 1975 and 2017, seat belts saved 374,276 lives.
Airbags can also help prevent you from being propelled forward in a crash. While airbags can cushion the blow of a collision, they also deploy with explosive force. Like any other car safety feature, these devices cannot protect individuals from every injury.
Different types of collisions produce unique injury patterns. Head-on collisions are particularly deadly because the vehicles hit with the full force of their combined speeds and weights. The front area of the car may collapse, seriously injuring any vehicle occupant, especially those in the front seats.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety found that 58 percent of traffic fatalities in 2020 were due to front-end accidents.
Many people think of rear-end collisions as no more than fender benders. In truth, they can be much more severe than the nickname suggests. Rear-end crashes can cause painful and serious injuries, such as:
- Head injuries
- Neck and spinal injuries
- Facial injuries
- Soft tissue damage
Many of the injuries associated with rear-end collisions result from the sudden forward-and-backward force they impart on the body. These crashes may also lead to chain-reaction crashes, injuring people in multiple vehicles as each car is propelled into the other.
A side collision, or T-bone crash, occurs when the front of one vehicle hits the side of another car, resulting in a shape like the letter “T.” Side collisions can lead to severe injuries because vehicles lack crumple zones on their sides. These accidents may also result in vehicle rollovers.
What happens to your body in a rollover accident? You could be tossed around the cabin as it flips over or even ejected from the car entirely. A roof collapse can cause severe injuries like broken bones, head injuries, and soft tissue damage. Rollovers can also result in crush injuries and traumatic amputations, changing a victim’s life forever.
A car accident isn’t a single collision. It’s three:
- First collision – The first collision is the motor vehicle crash itself. When a car hits another vehicle or a fixed object, it slows down almost immediately, absorbing the shock of the unexpected impact.
- Second collision – The next collision is known as the human collision. Although the car comes to a sudden halt, its occupants keep moving in the same direction and at the same speed that the vehicle was moving until impact. This is where a seatbelt can save your life, as it prevents you from continuing forward as the car comes to a stop.
- Third collision – The third and final collision is the internal collision. The exterior portions of your body may have stopped moving, but your internal organs haven’t. Like the second collision, your organs keep moving until they encounter a barrier that stops their motion. For example, the brain may collide with the inside of the skull, resulting in a concussion or other head injury. The torso’s organs could crash against the ribcage and sternum, damaging them or causing them to rupture.
Common Types of Injuries
Some of the most common injuries in car collisions include:
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Spinal cord injury
- Neck injuries
- Back injuries
- Facial injuries
- Broken bones
- Organ damage
- Internal bleeding
- Soft tissue damage
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Injured in a Crash? Get a Free Consultation with a Michigan Car Accident Attorney
If you sustained injuries in a car accident in Michigan, reach out to an experienced car accident lawyer at Christensen Law. We look forward to meeting you, learning more about your case, and discussing your options for full and fair compensation. Call or contact us now for a free consultation.