Here’s Why You Shouldn’t Ignore Headaches After a Car Accident

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Here’s Why You Shouldn’t Ignore Headaches After a Car Accident

by | Jan 11, 2023 | Accidents

In the aftermath of a car accident, your body can experience an array of physical and emotional reactions. One of the most common yet often ignored symptoms is a headache. While it may seem like just a minor annoyance, headaches can be an indication of something more serious. Read on to find out why you shouldn’t ignore headaches after a car accident and what steps you should take if you’re experiencing one.

What Causes a Headache After a Car Accident?

It is estimated that each year, approximately 1.3 million people lose their lives in car accidents, while 20 to 50 million more are injured. While you may consider yourself lucky to survive a car accident without serious injury, it is still important to visit a medical professional for an evaluation, as some symptoms may not be immediately apparent. 

The most common reason is whiplash, when the head and neck are suddenly jerked forward and backward. This can cause the muscles and ligaments in the neck to become stretched or torn, leading to spinal inflammation. In addition, headaches, dizziness, fatigue, and difficulty concentrating often accompany whiplash.

Another possible cause of headaches after a car accident is a concussion. Concussions occur when the brain is jarred or shaken, causing it to bounce around inside the skull. This can damage delicate brain tissue and lead to various symptoms, including headaches. Concussions can also cause other severe symptoms such as confusion, memory loss, nausea, and vomiting. 

Finally, stress is another common trigger for headaches. Car accidents can be traumatic events that leave us overwhelmed and stressed. This can lead to tension headaches or migraines in some people. If you’re struggling with stress after a car accident, many resources are available to help you cope. Talk to your doctor about what options may be best for you.

Were you hit as a pedestrian while walking? If so, read our blog to learn about the steps you can take.

Symptoms of a Headache After a Car Accident

The following are the types and symptoms of the most common head injuries that can result from a car collision:

Post-traumatic headache:

This type of headache is often the result of trauma to the head and neck during a car accident or other traumatic event. It may be accompanied by neck pain that radiates to the head. These headaches typically appear within hours to days after the accident, but in some cases, they may be delayed. 

If you are experiencing post-traumatic headaches after a car accident, it is important to seek medical attention as soon as possible as they can sometimes indicate brain damage.

Concussion headache:

Concussion headaches are caused by a blow or jolt to the head that affects brain function. They may include symptoms such as nausea, light and sound sensitivity, confusion, dizziness, ringing in the ears, memory loss, slurred speech, sleep problems, and anxiety. These symptoms may be referred to as post-concussion syndrome.

Muscle strain headaches:

Muscle strain headaches, also known as spasm headaches, can be caused by traumatic and non-traumatic events such as car accidents. In these cases, the sudden impact may damage or tear the soft tissue in the neck, head, or upper back muscles, leading to headaches and other symptoms such as pain during certain movements, reduced range of motion, tenderness in the affected muscle, and redness/swelling.

Whiplash headaches:

Whiplash headaches are a type of headache that can occur after a car accident. They are often caused by the sudden and forceful movement of the head and neck during a collision, which can strain the muscles and ligaments in the neck and upper back. Symptoms of whiplash headaches may include:

  • Headache pain that is located in the neck, scalp, or temples
  • Neck pain or stiffness
  • Dizziness
  • Blurred vision
  • Tiredness or fatigue
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Irritability

Treatment for Headaches After a Car Accident

After a car accident, it’s important to seek medical attention immediately, even if you don’t think you’re injured. Many times, people experience a rush of adrenaline after an accident that can mask pain and other symptoms. For example, a headache is one of the most common symptoms of a concussion or other brain injury.

If you have a headache after a car accident, you must see a doctor immediately. If you wait too long, your insurance company may try to say that your injuries are not related to the accident.

There are many different treatments for headaches, depending on the cause. For example, you may need to rest and avoid bright lights and loud noises if you have a concussion. You may also need pain medication or ice packs to relieve pain. If your headache is due to muscle tension, your doctor may recommend massage or physical therapy.

No matter what type of headache you have, it’s important to see a doctor after a car accident so that you can get the treatment you need.

In conclusion, headaches after a car accident should not be ignored. They are often symptoms of an underlying condition such as whiplash or traumatic brain injury, so seeking medical attention is necessary to ensure proper diagnosis and treatment. In addition, while mild headaches may go away on their own with rest, it is important to seek help if the pain persists or worsens over time. Remember: your health comes first. 
For legal assistance following a car accident, Pacin Levine, P.A. is available to help. Don’t hesitate to seek the medical and legal support you need to protect your rights and ensure the best possible outcome for your case. Contact us at 1-800-247-2727 or [email protected].

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