Spot the signs of concussion after a car accident

A concussion is a common brain injury that you might receive after a car accident. It occurs when your head experiences a sudden jolt or blow. While concussions are generally mild brain injuries, they can still have a serious impact on your life.

Symptoms on the scene

Anyone involved in a car accident is subject to concussions, from young children to fully-grown adults. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to tell if you have a concussion because you can’t always see the injury from the outside.

Here are some symptoms to look out for immediately following an accident that might indicate you have suffered from a concussion:

  • Loss of consciousness
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Ringing in the ears

Delayed symptoms

However, sometimes symptoms of a concussion might not show up until days after your car accident. You may not realize that the pain or discomfort you’re feeling is directly related to the accident. But an untreated concussion can lead to worsening problems for you.

Days, even weeks after your accident, watch out for these symptoms:

  • Headaches — This is a common side effect and may be immediate or delayed. But because headaches are so common, you might not make the connection that the headache you’re suffering from days later is a direct result of your accident.
  • Disruption of sleep — Concussions can mess with your sleeping patterns. You might notice an increase in fatigue and find yourself sleeping more than usual. On the other hand, you might have trouble falling or staying asleep at night after suffering from a concussion.
  • Confusion — The aftermath of a car accident can be overwhelming even if you don’t get a concussion. But if you do have one, you might find yourself feeling dazed. You may have trouble remembering having hit your head at all, or you may not be able to recall the details of your accident. This memory loss and confusion can carry on for days, even weeks after your accident.
  • Changes in mood or behavior — A brain injury like a concussion can increase feelings of depression or anxiety. It might make you more prone to irritability, anger or nervousness for no discernable reason.

Even if you can’t see an injury doesn’t mean it isn’t there. Knowing the signs and symptoms of a concussion can help you understand if you or a loved one suffered from one after a car accident. Seeking immediate treatment can ensure that you get the help you need to recover.