I’m a little banged up, but nothing serious. Do I really need to see a doctor?
You already know that a few things need to happen after being in what seems to be a minor accident. The authorities must be notified, statements must be provided when they arrive, and there’s the need to contact your insurance provider.
One task that you may think is unnecessary is seeing a doctor as soon as possible. Even if you seem to be fine, it makes sense to leave that determination in the hands of a medical professional. Here are some of the reasons that you need to see a doctor now instead of assuming that the worst you will experience is a little soreness tomorrow.
Documentation of Any Injuries
The fact that you feel okay now does not mean all is well. You could have some type of injury that will not manifest until tomorrow or the day after. By choosing to seek medical attention immediately following the accident, any injuries will be documented by a professional. That will come in handy if you do end up needing some type of treatment, since the doctor will be able to confirm that the condition is directly related to the accident.
Diagnosing What You Don’t Detect
Some injuries are hard to detect at first. It takes time for them to begin having an adverse effect on your health. Choosing to seek medical help in the hours after the accident makes it possible to run tests and find out if there is any issue beginning to develop.
Perhaps the impact was not enough to deploy an airbag, but it was enough to pitch you forward and result in making contact with the steering column. You feel okay right now, but the tests indicate that you have more than a bruised forehead. Thanks to the early detection, it’s possible to begin treatments now and prevent the situation from escalating.
Early Treatment Translates to Less Pain
Seeing a doctor in 72 hours or less after an accident makes it easier to identify the emerging problem before you can experience a lot of pain. For example, you may notice nothing other than a little stiffness in your neck right after the accident. Without prompt treatment, that pain could increase and begin to extend to your shoulders and down your spine. By seeing a doctor and undergoing an examination in the hours after the event, it’s possible to identify the beginnings of any inflammation present in those areas. That allows the doctor to begin treatment immediately. Thanks to the quick diagnosis and treatment, you will not end up dealing with severe pain in the days to come.
Avoiding Side Effects Later On
Many types of injuries trigger side effects elsewhere. Some will not manifest for days afterward, making it harder to connect them with the accident itself. If you seek medical attention shortly after the event and some type of injury is identified, it is much easier to determine if that side effect is actually connected to the injury in some manner.
An example of a less than obvious effect of being injured in an auto accident has to do with the development of some type of sexual dysfunction. Not everyone is aware that injuries to the spinal column can result in this kind of health issue. Given the impact that this type of effect can have on the quality of life, it’s important to know whether it’s related to the pain in the small of the back that developed after the car accident took place.
Including the Results in an Insurance Claim
There will be a need to file a claim after the accident. Instead of needing to amend the claim later, it makes sense to see a doctor and include the medical information as part of the original paperwork. That will mean fewer delays in processing the claim and getting a response.
Faster processing of insurance claims is important for more than one reason. You may not have the money on hand to pay for the repairs to your vehicle or take care of the medical expenses related to any injuries you sustained. Since the last thing you need is worries about finances as you recover from the accident, getting a check from the insurance company will make it easier to pay the bills and focus mainly on getting better.
Never assume that just because you don’t feel dizzy or have any physical pain that no injury has taken place. The smart move is to see a doctor and undergo an examination. Doing so will ensure that if anything is wrong, the right medical treatments will commence before the problem can get worse.