An ER doctor should see children after any car accident. A good rule of thumb is “better safe than sorry.” If you are worried that your child got hurt, emergency rooms have the equipment and training to promptly diagnose and treat accident injuries.
If you decide not to go to the ER, you should still schedule an appointment with your family doctor to follow up. Monitor your child for symptoms or changes in behavior that could indicate an injury. Young children especially cannot describe what they are feeling well or accurately tell you when something is wrong.
Minor Car Accidents Can Still Cause Serious Injuries
Don’t underestimate the physical and mental damages car accidents can cause. Even a minor car accident can cause many negative impacts to your body. Children are especially susceptible to injuries since they are still young and their bodies are developing. Even though you may feel okay as a grown adult, a small child can sustain serious harm after a small car accident.
How Do I Know If the ER Is Necessary?
If emergency medics respond to your accident, let them take your child to the ER if they recommend it. Emergency medical personnel get trained to evaluate accident injuries, and if they believe your child needs attention at the hospital, it’s wise to listen.
Many minor accidents fall into a gray area. Your children may not be bleeding and may not seem to have any trouble moving around. If they are old enough, they may tell you they feel fine. This can lead you to think that your child didn’t get hurt.
For both children and adults, car accidents release hormones that can hide symptoms of injuries. Many accident victims don’t feel anything at first, but later they may develop symptoms of muscle and “soft tissue” injuries or a head injury.
Signs You Should Take Your Child to the ER
There are several signs that you should go to the ER, either right after the accident or in the hours or days that follow:
- You have an infant. Infants are incredibly fragile, and even a minor impact can cause severe injuries to a baby. And an infant can’t tell you what’s wrong.
- Your child tells you something hurts or that they feel dizzy or have a headache.
- Your child hit their head. An impact on the head can lead to anything from a mild concussion to a life-changing brain injury.
- You notice changes or symptoms, such as excessive crying or fussiness, a change in appetite, vomiting, or personality changes.
It’s normal to have anxiety after a car accident. However, you should be aware that your child will pick up on this and cause them stress. A trip to the ER can reassure you that your child is okay, give you a diagnosis and treatment plan, or help you understand what to watch out for. When you feel calmer, it can lessen your child’s distress too.
Are There Advantages to Going to the Emergency Room?
Yes, a trip to the emergency room can help you make a strong insurance claim. Georgia law allows car accident victims to recover the full cost of their injuries from whoever caused the accident. That means you should be able to get the cost of emergency room care, other treatment for you and your children, and the cost to repair or replace your car.
But if you wait too long to get medical attention, the car insurance company may try to deny your claim. It may say your child wasn’t really injured in the accident or wasn’t hurt as badly as you claim. A trip to the emergency room shows that you knew your child was hurt, and it can prove the types of injuries caused by the accident.
Don’t Pay for Medical Expenses Out of Pocket After a Car Accident
The costs of ER visits typically float around several hundred dollars for the most basic of injuries. However, there are times where hospitals can charge an exorbitant amount of medical fees if scans and other medical procedures get conducted.
You shouldn’t have to pay out of pocket for medical treatment due to an accident caused by a negligent driver. You should get the best medical care for your child without having to worry about risking your financial health.
Accidents that involve children are more complicated than other accident claims because the courts may have to be involved in approving accident settlements involving children. A car accident lawyer can handle the process for you and help you get the most money possible from the insurance company.
Talk to a Car Accident Lawyer As Soon as Possible
Motor vehicle crashes are among the leading causes of death for children. Roughly 96,000 children got injured due to car accidents in 2018, and 636 died, according to the latest child passenger safety facts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Don’t let the negligent driver responsible for your accident get away with what they’ve done. Talk to a lawyer today to begin filing your claim.