Delayed Pain After a Car Accident

Delayed Pain After a Car Accident

Over 50 million people suffer non-fatal injuries after an accident. These injuries include scratches, bruises, swelling, and fractures. Other non-physical injuries such as traumatic brain injuries and torn muscles may not even cause any pain immediately.

While you might feel thankful that you didn’t leave the accident scene in an ambulance, it is not always a guarantee that you’re not hurt. Some pains from the accident may delay for hours, days, or even weeks, only to manifest later.

Delayed pain after an accident can take up to 48 hours before turning symptomatic. Sometimes it may take longer. By the time you start feeling the pain, the damage done to your body could be worse than you can ever imagine.

While it’s advisable to seek medical attention after an accident, even if you’re not injured, sometimes delayed pain might fail to show during routine checkup after a crash.

But you should not delay seeking medical help. The more you delay, the more you complicate your case. You might even make it difficult to prove that the injuries suffered were as a direct result of the car accident.

This blog post explores some of the car accident injuries that may delay showing symptoms and what to do to ensure you don’t jeopardize your case.

What Types of Car Accident Pain Are Commonly Delayed?

You must learn to differentiate the pain you experience from the accident and other body pains.

For instance, experiencing delayed back pain after a car accident doesn’t always mean the aftermath of the accident. Also, not every headache is caused by an accident; it could be fatigue or other issues.

You should pay attention to what could be causing the headache and if it’s associated with other symptoms such as head or neck pain.

Also, understand that some pains are not physical but emotional. It’s common for a person in an accident to suffer post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or anxiety days after the accident.

Below are some pains you’re likely to feel days after an accident.

1. Headaches

Headaches that persist or become worse days after the accident could signify a severe injury. Pay attention to where the headache is coming from and how severe it is.

If this headache worsens even after taking some painkillers, it may indicate neck injuries such as whiplash, brain injuries such as blood clots, or concussion.

Other times, the headache could indicate serious emotional injuries such as PTSD. If not treated on time, this can result in even more severe medical problems.

2. Back Pain

Another thing to worry about is delayed back pain after a car accident. You should know that it’s common to experience back pain 2 years after a car accident.

Don’t take it lightly if you feel that shooting, radiating, or throbbing pain in your lower back long after the accident.

What could appear as something minor could result from a herniated disc, intervertebral disc damage, or other soft tissue injuries. You might also feel upper back pain due to the spinal cord or whiplash injuries.

back pains after a car accident

If you start experiencing back pain after a car accident, seek immediate medical attention. If not treated on time, back pain can linger for years and make life unbearable. Some back pain injuries, such as spinal cord damage, can be fatal if not treated on time.

3. Dizziness

You might experience dizziness days after the accident, which could indicate a concussion. Such injuries interfere with how the brain communicates to the rest of the body. You could feel dizzy or sometimes lose balance.

You might also have trouble concentrating or remembering things. This usually happens if you experience traumatic brain injury (TBI) after a car accident. Brain damage can bring with it several emotional problems. Get yourself checked at a medical facility before things get even worse.

4. Neck and Shoulder Pain

It’s not unusual to experience neck pain 2 years after a car accident. If you were involved in a rear-end collision, the impact could have thrown your head back and forth several times, injuring your neck and shoulder.

Neck or shoulder pain days after the accident can result from whiplash, herniated disk, or spinal cord injuries. This pain can linger for several months or be permanent if not treated on time.

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5. Abdominal Pain

While the seatbelt can be the best protection you get from the impact of the accident, it can still pose some problems in the abdomen. You might end up with bruises on your stomach.

But sometimes, the injury might go beyond bruising and instead cause internal bleeding or injuries to other internal organs in the stomach.

Delayed pain after a car accident

It can also be associated with delayed rib pain after a car accident. You might not feel the pain immediately, but once you feel any, seek medical attention before it becomes fatal.

6. Tingling and Numbness

Tingling and numbness could be due to herniated discs pressing on the nerves in the spine. You’re likely to feel these sensations on the arms and legs.

The sensations can also cause pain and other discomforts in the body. While many people might ignore such feelings, they could signify a more serious problem.

 What Can I Do If My Pain Was Delayed?

If you experience delayed back pain after a car accident or any other injuries, the first thing to do is ensure you get medical attention. Once you do this, you can still claim compensation for delayed injuries.

But claiming compensation for delayed pain after a car accident is only possible if you didn’t sign a release of liability or settle your claim with the at-fault driver’s car insurance.

Make sure you get a complete evaluation of your injuries and an accurate estimation of any future medical costs you’re likely to incur after the accident.

However, you might not get compensated for delayed pain after a car accident if you have already signed the release of liability form. Signing this form ends any future claims or lawsuits associated with the accident.

Never sign this form before you get a complete medical evaluation and know whether you have any injuries that might bring problems later.

Wait until you achieve maximum medical improvement (MMI) before signing anything. At this point, you’ll be certain that you’re fully recovered, and no injuries will resurface later.

Do I Need Legal Counsel?

While delayed pain and injuries after a car accident are common, it might be hard to prove to the insurance company that the pain is associated with the accident.

The insurance might not agree easily to cover the new medical costs. You need to hire an experienced car accident attorney to fight for your rights when you get to this point.

You also need legal counsel to guide you on how to handle everything and what you should and shouldn’t sign.

Remember, you’re not experienced when it comes to car accident laws, and experienced insurance representatives may sway you into selling your rights to claim any additional compensation in case your situation worsens.

car accident lawyer

Sometimes, you might be forced to file a lawsuit to get the compensation you deserve delayed back pain after a car accident and other injuries.

If things reach this level, you need the services of an experienced auto accident attorney to guide you through the process. Having an accident injury attorney by your side will assure you that you’re making the right decision.


Delayed pain after a car accident is not as uncommon as you may think. In fact, many people experience delayed pain in some form or another.

Headaches, back pain, and dizziness are among the most common types of pain that are experienced days or even weeks after an accident.

If you are experiencing any type of delayed pain, it is important to seek medical attention right away. You may also need legal counsel if you have been injured in a car accident.

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