It only takes a split second for a car crash to happen. Sadly, a victim of a car accident can feel its effects for weeks, months, or years to come. And in some cases, their physical impairment or emotional distress might never go away.
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How a car accident affects your life depends on many factors. Even if you are on the road to a full recovery and are expecting a monetary settlement, there can be remaining problems that feel insurmountable. Recovering from the pain from an injury and paying the medical bills are only part of the process. Many victims are surprised at some of the less obvious impacts of a car crash, and how hard it can be to put it all behind them and move on.
Car Crash Injuries and Their Impact on Life
According to the New Mexico Traffic Crash Annual Report, 30% of crashes in the state resulted in an injury in 2021. On an average day, one of those injuries happens every 29 minutes! These statistics include everything from minor bumps and bruises in a fender bender, to life-threatening wounds sustained in a more serious crash like underride.
Regardless of the amount of vehicle damage or how badly they are hurt, the victim of a car accident can feel the effects of the incident in the following areas of their life:
Obviously, a personal injury in a car crash is going to take a physical toll. Pain and discomfort are expected from cuts, bruises, broken bones, or any other wounds. Treatment and the healing process can be painful too, as the muscles, bones, and joints mend. Surgery and its recovery can also be difficult.
Victims may be able to recover completely from their physical injuries, but that is not always the case. Severe crashes can result in chronic pain, traumatic brain injuries, paralysis, amputation, or a host of other related conditions. Any of these can make it impossible to resume normal activities, changing the victim’s life forever.
The National Safety Council estimated motor-vehicle injury costs were nearly $500 billion in 2021. This included medical expenses, lost wages, employer costs, administrative expenses, and vehicle property damage. It is not surprising that the portion owed by an individual in a crash can be difficult to afford.
Even if the victim is successful at getting a fair settlement from an at-fault driver or their insurance company, it won’t happen immediately. In the meantime, medical expenses can add up fast, putting a strain on a family’s finances. The situation is even more worrisome if the victim is the main breadwinner and is unable to work. And if their injuries make them unable to continue performing the same job, the consequences can be catastrophic.
Mounting debt is often an issue when recovering from car accident injuries, and missed payments can ruin a person’s credit. Receiving compensation might be the only way to get back on track financially.
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The trauma of a bad car crash and the slow, painful recovery process can result in psychological strain and emotional problems. Depression and anxiety are common after being hurt. Victims may also suffer from feelings of guilt, even if there was nothing they could have done differently. In some cases, they may develop Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) that can make it difficult to drive again or resume other normal activities.
Emotional issues after a car accident can often be eased with the help of therapy and medication. But some may struggle and need treatment for many years.
The victim of a car accident can expect to have their routine disrupted as they spend a lot of time sorting out all of the effects of their crash. Simply arranging for transportation if their car is totaled can be a major inconvenience. Add to that time spent going to medical follow-up appointments, physical therapy sessions, and meeting with insurance companies and attorneys. The amount of disruption depends on a victim’s circumstance. For example, a two-car family with plenty of public transportation options will have an easier time dealing without one of their cars. But if a family loses their only mode of transportation, it makes daily life much more difficult and stressful. And the longer the physical, financial, and emotional problems drag on, the more disruptive the situation can be to getting back to normal.
A car crash can affect a person’s enjoyment of life in the short term, and possibly forever. Right after an accident, they may have to cancel plans for a vacation or will be unable to attend their children’s events. Injuries might make it difficult or impossible to participate in their favorite pastimes, sports, or hobbies. In addition to the physical inability to do the things they want to do, the emotional and financial toll of an accident can make them miss out on a lot too.
Being the victim of a car accident means working to hold an at-fault driver accountable. This can include battling an insurance company that might try to place blame on you rather than their insured. It could also involve testifying in court if a lawsuit is necessary. Legal battles are not only stressful and time-consuming, they can drag on for a long time before a settlement is reached. Unfortunately, this part of being hurt in an accident is necessary in order to get fair compensation.
Strain on Relationships
As if having a car accident affect your life is not bad enough, it often affects a victim’s loved ones too. Spouses, parents, or children often must become caregivers for a victim with debilitating injuries. If permanently disabled, this can change the family dynamic completely. And even an injury that can be overcome could take valuable time away from caring for and nurturing one’s children. It is not uncommon for relationships with friends and family to be negatively affected when a loved one is injured in a car crash.
Minimizing a Car Accident’s Effect on Your Life
Recovering from a car crash can be extremely hard and can take a long time. But it can be made easier with the help of an experienced personal injury attorney who can get you the compensation you deserve.
The team at Kane Personal Injury can help ease the burden by representing you with the insurance company and in court to make sure the at-fault driver is held liable for your injuries. They will seek reimbursement for medical expenses and replacement of lost wages on your behalf. But they will also consider and calculate all of the other ways your car accident has affected your life now, and how it will likely affect your future wellbeing.
Kane Personal Injury will see that you can live your life to the fullest despite your accident. Contact us today for a free consultation.