Car accidents are traumatic incidents – physically and emotionally. If you find yourself in the midst of one, it’s imperative for your health and wellbeing to seek medical attention as soon as possible. A physician will be able to evaluate, diagnose, and treat your injuries. In order to maximize your chances of recovery, let’s take a look at five questions to ask your doctor after a crash.
1) What is the extent of my injuries?
Because not all injuries are visible, you’ll want to ask your doctor to be specific about the injuries you’ve sustained. If, for example, your arm was injured, you’ll want to know the degree of the injury, what part of the arm was affected, and how it could impact your mobility. You’ll be able to review the information on your injuries through your medical records.
2) What caused my injuries?
This question can seem unnecessary because you know that you were in a car accident, but your doctor will be able to provide specific details as to how your injuries happened and why. The more information you have regarding the nature of your injuries, the better your chances are of understanding what you need to do to recover as fully as possible. If you’re filing a claim with an insurance company to cover your losses, they’ll need details about your injuries to value your claim.
3) What will my recovery look like?
Every auto accident victim’s recovery is different. Age, health status prior to the crash, and the types of injuries all affect what a person’s recovery looks like. In some cases, you may be able to get back to your normal routine in a matter of weeks. If, however, you sustain a head or back injury, you could be looking at months of treatment and procedures. It can be challenging to handle a long recovery, but having an idea of what you’re facing can make the process easier.
4) Do I need to see a specialist?
While there are common injuries that can be treated by your primary care physician, you may need a referral to see a specialist. Traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord damage, and burns are among some of the injuries that require special medical attention. If you do need to see a specialist, your doctor can help you find the right person for the job.
5) When can I return to work?
Depending on your injuries and what you do for a living, you may need to take time off work. It’s understandable to be concerned about doing so – especially if it means you won’t be receiving your paychecks. If you disregard doctor’s orders, however, you’ll put yourself at risk of exacerbating your injuries and needing to take even more time off work. Your doctor will let you know when it’s safe for you to return and if there are any duties you should hold off on doing.
After you’ve had your questions answered and are ready to head home, it’s important to follow your doctor’s advice and attend any follow-up appointments. Once you’ve been seen by your doctor and have a handle on your injuries and recovery, you can start focusing on moving past your car accident.