Two People to Call When You Have Numbness After a Car Accident

victim experiencing numbness after a car accident
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When you’re hurt in a car accident, you may feel numbness or tingling in your limbs months later. The accident probably caused soft tissue damage such as a bruise, strain, sprain, or concussion. If you’re injured in an accident and have tingling in your limbs, it’s important to see a doctor right away to find out what’s wrong. When someone else caused the accident, talk to a car accident attorney, too. They will help you get money for your pain and suffering.

Why Soft Tissue Damage Leads to Tingling in the Limbs 

The impact of an accident may cause the neck to snap back quickly, or cause the lower back to suddenly twist. These types of injuries result in soft tissue damage as well as damage to surrounding nerves. The initial pain from injuries can hide numbness or tingling in limbs caused by nerve damage, so you may not feel it for a long time. But nerve damage often shows up months  after the crash, and sometimes, victims of an accident even end up paralyzed.  

Numbness or tingling in the limbs occurs when one or more peripheral nerves is damaged. When these nerves are healthy, they communicate with the brain and spinal cord:

  • Motor nerves. If these nerves are affected, you may have trouble standing, walking, and working. People with motor nerve damage also have muscle weakness and cramps, and they also may twitch without knowing it.
  • Sensory nerves. Their function is to relay information about touch, pain, and temperature. If they become damaged, you may have numbness and tingling, and may not  be able to feel heat or cold. If your legs or feet are numb, you could have trouble walking because you can’t keep your balance. Sensory nerve damage will also hide pain. 

Many people get help from doctors to heal from numbness after a car wreck. The sooner you see a doctor, the more likely you are to heal.  


car accident victim talking to doctor about medical bills
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Learning the Cause of Numbness After a Car Accident

When you want help with your medical bills, a car accident attorney will need to prove the numbness is a result of the car wreck. A doctor will ask questions to determine whether your injuries are from the accident or from something else. Most will ask:

  1. Did the patient smash into the inside of the car or another rider? Do they have soft tissue damage like cuts or bruises? Your body swells around soft tissue damage. The swelling sometimes causes pinched nerves.
  2. Did they get whiplash? This is when the impact of a crash jerks the head around. Whiplash puts pressure on the nerves at the base of the neck and shoulders.
  3. Was the crash victim’s body twisted hard during the wreck? This will cause a herniated disc which compresses nerves in your back. Pain from a herniated disc moves into the victim’s legs or arms. 
  4. Did their head or body hit the inside of the car, another rider, or the ground? A hard hit to your head or body is called blunt force trauma. This injury can compress, crush, or tear nearby nerves. 

If any of these things happened to you during a crash, see a doctor right away. Your car accident attorney will use the doctor’s exam as part of the evidence to build a case against the person who hit you. If your injury heals before you see a doctor, there will be no medical proof that you had nerve damage after the accident.

What Doctors Do for Car Crash Victims with Tingling in Limbs

Doctors begin exams by asking about crash victims’ symptoms of nerve damage. Then, they check the basics like blood pressure, breathing, and how the legs are moving. They also ask about other factors known to cause nerve damage such as work-related injuries and long-term drug or alcohol use. Doctors may do one or more of these tests:

  • Check the fluid in the brain and spine
  • Test electrical activity in the muscles
  • Do a nerve conduction study
  • Scan your head and body with CT, MRI, or X-ray
  • Biopsy your nerves and/or skin to see if cancer is present

Once the doctor knows what is wrong, they will provide a course of treatment. This may include: 

  • Physical therapy and/or chiropractic care to reduce pressure on the nerve
  • Massages to relax the body and increase blood flow
  • Acupuncture
  • Anti-inflammatory medications
  • Steroid injections
  • Rest

Notice the list does not include surgery. This is because it is rarely used to heal nerve damage. 

Why to Contact a Car Accident Attorney If You Have Numbness

When you suffer soft tissue damage leading to numbness, your life may never be the same. You already face medical bills and lost work time. You may need a new car. Some people need to change careers because of their injuries. The car accident attorneys at Hipskind & McAninch will get you the money you deserve from the person who caused the wreck. The process of getting what you deserve begins with a private conversation. Call our office at 618-312-1515 or message us. We will be your trusted partner in standing up for your rights. 


Car Accidents


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