Thousands of car accidents occur every day, and each of them is likely to result in some degree of injury. While only the most devastating crashes tend to lead to life-altering conditions, the fact is that even a mild fender bender can cause soft tissue injuries that deserve medical attention.
The soft areas of your body include muscles, tendons, and ligaments. Car accidents exert a great deal of force on the people within a vehicle, making it very easy to sustain one or more of the common types of soft tissue injuries that often result from crashes.
Sprains refer to ligament damage due to the overextension of a joint. Ankles, knees, and wrists are particularly susceptible to this form of stretching or tearing, especially because your natural instinct upon impact is to brace yourself with your hands or feet.
Contusions are bruises that you might sustain when the force of an impact jostles you about the interior of your vehicle. You can treat most contusions by taking measures against additional swelling, but long-lasting symptoms could indicate permanent damage if you do not seek further treatment.
Strains are a form of harmful stretching of your muscles or tendons. The most well-known type of strain is whiplash, which is a common occurrence in rear-end collisions. Many strains will recover over time, but a severe tear may require surgery to mend.
Soft tissue injuries have a reputation for not being particularly serious, but it is never a good idea to walk away from a car accident without seeking medical attention. Even if you feel fine, it can take time for telltale symptoms of a severe condition to develop.