After being involved in a crash, it is not uncommon for victims to report feeling dizzy. While the aftermath of emotional trauma can often cause people to feel this way, it could also be a symptom of a more severe injury, such as a concussion, traumatic brain injury or whiplash.
In today’s article, the attorneys at Schmidt Kramer define the four types of dizziness, the potential causes after a crash and what victims should do to protect their health. We also discuss why you may want to get a knowledgeable lawyer involved.
Our auto accident lawyers in Harrisburg have been helping injured victims throughout Pennsylvania for decades. Unlike insurance companies, however, we protect your best interests, working diligently to recover full and fair compensation for your injuries and other losses.
Need legal help after a crash in Pennsylvania? Call (717) 727-1403
What Does It Mean If I Feel Dizzy After a Crash?
Feeling dizzy, disoriented or disconnected after a crash could be your body’s natural response to trauma. Some individuals may routinely struggle with occasional bouts of dizziness, unrelated to the collision. For instance, medical conditions, such as benign paroxysmal positional vertigo, or BPPV, can cause mild to severe vertigo.
Dizziness is a general term, but there are four types of balance disorders that can cause symptoms ranging from mild to debilitating.
Being lightheaded sounds mild, but it can still interrupt your sense of spatial awareness. People who feel this way might say they feel disconnected, disoriented, woozy or off balance. While this type of dizziness may not be serious, it could indicate an underlying medical condition, such as whiplash.
Presyncope can be caused by severe emotional distress, a sudden change in blood pressure and other medical issues. People may often experience this prior to passing out. Often, sitting down and putting your head between your knees can help you to avoid losing consciousness. However, even if you do not pass out, you should seek medical attention right away to determine if there is a physical injury causing you to feel this way.
Vertigo is a very unpleasant feeling that makes you feel like the room is spinning around you, even though it is not. After a car crash, this could be an indication of a serious head injury, such as a traumatic brain injury (TBI) or concussion.
Symptoms of vertigo may include:
- Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
- Hearing loss
- Blurry vision
Disequilibrium is a medical condition that often gets confused with vertigo, however, they are not the same. Injury victims who suffer from disequilibrium may suffer from severe balance control and inner ear issues.
Mild dizziness after a crash should resolve on its own very quickly. However, it is impossible to know what internal damage your body may have sustained in the impact without getting a medical examination.
What Steps Should I Take If I Feel Dizzy After a Crash?
While feeling dizzy can be scary, it is important to stay calm. It helps to avoid sudden movements and to keep your head and body as still as possible. Even if dizziness seems minor, a thorough evaluation by a healthcare professional is recommended.
Additionally, if you are having dizziness, vertigo or light-headedness at the crash scene, do not try to exit your vehicle without help from first responders. When feeling disoriented in this way, it could be easy to end up in moving traffic.
Steps you can take to prioritize both your safety and health include:
- Accept medical help at the scene from first responders
- Ask for emergency transportation to a nearby hospital
- Get examined at the ER, rather than at your primary care doctor or urgent care center
- Discuss all your symptoms with your treating physician – even small details can provide additional insight
- Get treated as recommended by your doctor and follow his or her plan of care
- Contact an attorney right away to find out if you have a valid case for seeking compensation
- Notify your insurance company about the crash that caused your injury
- Do not agree to record a statement with your insurer and do not sign anything
Dizziness is not something you should ever ignore as it could be a sign of a severe, even life-threatening injury. Getting an immediate medical examination can help link your injuries to the crash. More importantly, it can help to protect your health.
Potential Causes of Dizziness Post-Crash
There are several potential injuries and other factors that could be causing you to feel dizzy after a car crash.
Common injuries that could be the underlying cause of your dizziness include:
- Whiplash: The sudden jerking motion during a collision can result in whiplash, causing neck strain or head injuries leading to dizziness.
- Concussions and other head trauma: Impact to the head can cause concussions, TBIs and other head injuries. These types of injuries can range from mild to severe. Victims with head injuries may or may not lose consciousness. However, the myth that you do not have a severe head injury if you do not lose consciousness is completely untrue.
- Psychological Impact: Emotional stress and shock following a car crash can manifest as physical symptoms like dizziness, often due to anxiety or psychological trauma.
Are You Feeling Dizzy After a Crash? Call Us After Seeking Medical Help
While initial dizziness might be a natural response to the body’s shock, you need diagnostic testing to rule out more serious injuries.
At Schmidt Kramer, we are dedicated to helping injured crash victims seek compensation for medical costs and other damages.
Got questions about what to do next? We have answers. Call to request a free case review to learn about your potential legal options.
Schmidt Kramer. Experienced Lawyers. Proven Results. (717) 727-1403