What Happens to Your Body When You Get Rear-Ended?
Rear-end accidents, which occur when one vehicle strikes another in front of it traveling in the same direction, are one of the most common types of car crashes. While rear-end collisions are often very minor, depending on the circumstances such accidents can have serious effects on your body—and may even cause permanent or fatal injuries.
During a rear-end collision, many things happen to your body in a short period of time due to the impact. Your body is launched forward only to be quickly pushed back into your seat from the inertia (and seatbelts). While this motion is occurring, your lumbar spine becomes compressed as you dip into your seat, your pelvis and hips crush your nerves, and your spine rapidly shrinks. Because people don’t typically see rear-end accidents coming, so they fail to brace themselves and can be thrown violently around the vehicle.
This can lead to injuries such as:
- Cervical acceleration/deceleration injuries, aka “whiplash”
- Herniated discs and other back injuries
- Internal trauma
- Muscle strains and sprains
- Nerve damage
- Traumatic brain injuries, such as coup contrecoup
To put this into perspective, imagine a five-ton vehicle (according to Autolist, the average car weighs 4,094 pounds in 2021) rear-ending another five-ton vehicle. Even at speeds of as low as 5 mph, a rear-end collision between these two vehicles will cause at least a whiplash injury to the human body, regardless of the damage—if any—to the vehicle itself.
Like most traffic crashes, rear-end accidents also cause adrenaline to start flowing through your body. The adrenaline rush can mask the pain of your injuries, making them seem less serious than they actually are. Therefore, seeking prompt medical treatment is important because many of these injuries are internal and can appear latent for days—if not longer. The best way to secure your health after a rear-end accident is to head to a doctor for a checkup as soon as possible. The sooner brain, back, and other injuries are caught, the more likely they are to respond positively to treatment.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a rear-end collision, contact the Dunk Law Firm team to secure the just compensation and medical care you deserve. Free consultations are available to all clients.