If you have been in a car accident, then you might be wondering what your next steps should be. If you don’t experience significant pain or have cuts or broken bones that need immediate attention after the accident, then you may be tempted to skip the doctor and hope the pain goes away on its own. However, the longer you wait to get treatment for a car accident injury, the greater the risk of complications or chronic pain. In fact, many people don’t realize they are injured until they get properly checked out by a knowledgeable and skilled car accident doctor. It can take a while to notice symptoms of a car accident injury because of the shock and adrenaline responses to the trauma. Here are ten things to talk about with your doctor after a car accident:
Information About the Car Accident
Your car accident doctor will want to know basic information about the car accident. Were you in the driver’s seat or a passenger seat? Did your vehicle collide with another vehicle, and if so, where did the point of impact occur? Were any other people injured in the car accident? Did paramedics attend to you at the scene?
How You Were Injured in the Car Accident
If you know you have an injury from a car accident, then your car accident doctor will want to know how the injury occurred. For example, many people experience neck and back pain after a car accident from the force of impact or being jostled around. Details about your injury will help your doctor know how to best proceed.
Symptoms You Experienced Right Away
Keep track of any symptoms you noticed right after the accident occurred, like an immediate sense of pain or bleeding. Some car accident injuries are more obvious than others, so you may be able to tell if you have a deep laceration but not so sure if you have a concussion until you get checked out by a professional.
Symptoms You Noticed Hours or Days Later
Some car accident injuries have symptoms that can take hours or days to fully appear. This can give you a false sense of security if you don’t feel pain or discomfort right away. However, you may start to develop headaches, stiffness, and soreness that could be a sign of an injury.
Your Full Health History and Family History
Your doctor will want to know more about your health history as well as your family history. This will help your doctor keep an eye out for potential allergies and other risk factors that may inform your diagnosis and treatment.
What Car Accident Injury Treatment Will Involve
Talk to your doctor about what the treatment for your car accident injury will involve. Do they recommend treatment right away, and if so, will it be non-invasive or minimally invasive? Discuss alternate options to surgery when possible to avoid a longer recovery time.
Will Your Injury Impact Your Ability to Work
In some cases, a car accident injury may impact your ability to return to the workplace right away. Ask your doctor if your injury will affect you going back to work. They can also help you with any necessary paperwork or information your workplace might need, as well as your insurance company.
Your Projected Outcome for Healing
An important part of your treatment and recovery will involve finding out whether you will make a full recovery. You will want to talk with your doctor about the projected outcome for your healing after you complete the treatment so that you know what to expect in the months ahead.
Timeframe for Recovery from Your Injury
It is also important to get an idea of the timeframe for recovering from your injury. Some car accident injuries can be mild, and the recovery period will take days to weeks, while other injuries may require months to reach a full recovery.
Does Your Doctor Recommend Follow-Up Care
You will also want to find out whether your doctor recommends follow-up care, like seeing a physical therapist as part of your treatment. Physical therapy is one of many treatment options that can help you adjust to your recovery and getting back to the activities you used to enjoy!