When people are injured in accidents, a lot of different thoughts can go
through their minds. “I’ll see how I feel, then see a doctor.
I don’t want to trouble anybody. Filing a
personal injury claim is too much work. My health insurance can take care of it. I’ll
see if the pain subsides.” Unfortunately, these are the types of
thought processes that lead to the delay in filing a much-needed personal
If a person is injured in a car accident, a
slip and fall accident, due to medical malpractice, because of a
dog attack, or for another reason and they hesitate to seek medical attention, it
can backfire on them in the future. How come? Because, when an injured
party waits days, weeks, or even months to see a doctor, it sends a strong
message, “I’m not really hurt” to the insurance company.
Even if the individual is definitely hurt, the insurance company doesn’t
see it that way. Or, they’ll see the delay as a golden opportunity
to reduce if not deny a claim.
Car Accidents: Delays in Treatment
Car accidents are very unique compared to other types of accidents. They can be scary
events. They’re unexpected and they happen in a flash. The body
doesn’t know what to do so it floods the system with adrenaline,
that little hormone called “epinephrine.” When adrenaline
is pumping through the body, it does two things: 1) it activates the body’s
fight-or-flight response, and 2) it masks pain. Of these effects, it’s
the second one we’re interested in.
When you’re in a crash, especially a high-speed one, your body can
be flooded with adrenaline. Meaning, you might not feel pain for a few
hours, or even a few days. This can fool you into thinking you’re
not hurt. As a result, you may decide not to see a doctor right away;
this can be a grave mistake.
For starters, your health is top priority. If you don’t see a doctor
or chiropractor, you could be suffering from a fracture, internal bleeding
or a concussion and not even know it. Then, there’s the insurance
issue we mentioned earlier. If you wait too long to seek medical treatment,
the insurance company can use that delay to reduce or deny your claim.
Our Advice to Injured Parties
Whenever you’re injured in an accident, it’s best to err on
the side of caution and seek medical treatment asap. If you can see a
doctor the same day, great. If that’s not possible, it’s best
to be seen
within three days of the accident, especially if it was a car accident. This way, you’re taking care
of yourself and not doing anything to jeopardize your personal injury claim.
To meet with a West Palm Beach personal injury lawyer,
contact our firm today!