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Even a minor vehicle incident in Arizona can lead to serious injuries instantly. However, not all damage is immediately apparent. How long after a car accident can injuries appear? It might take much longer than you think. For this reason, you should be mindful of your body and any changes you experience for an extensive time.

How Long After a Car Accident Can Injuries Appear: A Timeline

The first few minutes after a serious car crash are crucial for verifying and addressing the current health state of anyone involved. However, our experienced Phoenix personal injury lawyers recommend all involved persons to continue to monitor for new symptoms for much longer.

The First 24 Hours

Some injuries and conditions are obvious because they affect visible areas of the body. Cuts, scrapes, serious burns, and lacerations are examples of integumentary wounds that appear almost instantly once the skin becomes broken or damaged.

However, symptoms of internal injuries can take longer to materialize. For example, it could take a few hours or a few days for bruising to surface.

During and immediately after a car accident, your body may react with a rush of adrenaline or even shock. These physical states help keep your body more resistant to pain as part of the “fight or flight” response. Once the stress diminishes, you may start to notice pain and discomfort in the affected areas.

The Week After the Incident

It can take several days for the body to develop a noticeable response to trauma or damage. This does not mean these conditions aren’t serious. In fact, such sneaky symptoms could be the sign of a dangerous medical condition that requires immediate care.

In the aftermath of a car accident, many people assume they know the extent of any bodily damage right away. In truth, even major problems such as concussions, broken bones, infections, or internal bleeding may not become apparent until several days after. It can take time for the body to exhibit:

  • Swelling or inflammation
  • Headaches
  • Confusion or memory issues
  • New or worsening pain
  • Fever
  • Stiffness or immobility

This delay may result from several underlying factors or preexisting medical conditions. Regardless, all Maricopa County residents involved in a car crash should closely monitor themselves for new or changing symptoms for at least a week after.

A Month Later or More

Even if more than four weeks have passed since a vehicle crash, you may not be in the clear just yet. Mental and emotional repercussions, such as post-traumatic stress disorder, can take months to appear. You can develop long-term complications from other injuries as well, including nerve damage, joint stiffness or immobility, or chronic pain from changes to muscular or skeletal structures.

If You Sustain an Accident Injury, Contact Sargon Law Group

It’s important to stay vigilant when you walk away from an accident without obvious pain or damage. How long after a car accident can injuries appear? You could develop new symptoms weeks or months later, all of which may require medical care. Don’t get caught paying for expensive treatment when the fault lies with another driver. The Phoenix car accident lawyers at Sargon Law Group can help you make the right choices after an accident so you can get the support you need to recover and heal. Contact us today to learn more about the many legal services we offer in the Maricopa County area.