Soft tissue injuries can often result from incidents like a car accident. This is because it doesn’t take much trauma or impact to tear or strain our muscles and ligaments. Certain groups such as elderly individuals and others with less healthy and tight muscles are more susceptible to these injuries.
While most healthy individuals can quickly heal from a soft tissue injury, there are situations when this type of damage can become permanent. Because these injuries don’t seem as severe, people will often dismiss the symptoms or ignore their doctor’s orders when it comes to rest and recovery. Unfortunately, even the most minor strain can become a repetitive injury that worsens with time and doesn’t heal.
If you suffer from a soft tissue injury, you should seek medical attention no matter how insignificant it seems. If you are concerned about the cost of treatment, a personal injury claim can help you recover compensation for damages, such as medical expenses. You can also consult a personal injury attorney if you are worried about getting the compensation you need. They can guide you through the legal process to ensure all necessary steps are taken to win your case and get you the benefits that you deserve.
Types of Soft Tissue Injuries
Soft tissue injuries affect the muscles, tendons, and ligaments in our bodies. Various soft tissue injuries can occur depending on the incident or activity, such as a sports injury or an overuse injury. However, the most common soft tissue injuries in car accidents are sprains, strains, and contusions.
Sprains are stretches or tears in the ligaments and often occur when there is a sudden wrenching or twisting of your body. Essentially, any sudden movement that causes the ligament to stretch beyond its normal range of motion can result in a sprain. The ligaments are the connective tissues that connect your bones and the tissues most susceptible to sprains are in the ankles, knees, and wrists.
Symptoms of sprains include:
Strains are similar to sprains, except that they affect the muscles and tendons, not the ligaments. The tendons are the fibrous cords that connect your muscles to your bones. These injuries occur when the tendons or muscles are stretched beyond their normal range and most often occur in the back of the legs. When you strain a muscle or tendon, it may simply involve overstretching, or it can also involve partial or complete tears.
Symptoms of strains include:
- Muscle spasms
- Muscle weakness
Contusions, also known as bruises, are extremely common after a car accident as they typically occur from blunt force trauma, such as hitting the steering wheel, a window, or the side doors. They happen when the force of impact causes blood vessels and other fibers to break just below the surface of the skin. Bruises are often mild and result in nothing more than a little pain and tenderness. However, they can occasionally be a sign of something more severe, like internal bleeding. So you should always have them checked just in case.
Recovering From Soft Tissue Injuries
Most individuals can recover from soft tissue injuries fairly quickly as long as they follow doctors’ orders. Typically, your physician will prescribe what is known as the R.I.C.E. approach to recovery:
- Rest: Take it easy and avoid strenuous activities, especially those that put pressure on the injured area. Do not stop moving altogether, however, as this can cause the injured area to become stiff.
- Ice: Use ice or other cold compresses to alleviate pain, inflammation, and swelling. Do not constantly keep the area cold, however. Ice every two to three hours for 15–20 minutes.
- Compression: Compression bandages and wraps can help with swelling and stabilize the area. Just be sure not to wrap it too tightly that you cut off the blood circulation.
- Elevation: When possible, elevate the injured area above the level of your heart. This is especially important at night when you aren’t moving for an extended period.
Complications With Soft Tissue Injuries
If your symptoms don’t get better or worsen over time, you may need to return to the doctor to evaluate your injury. If this occurs, they will likely refer you to a physical therapist who can work with you and provide you with exercises and stretches that you can do at home to heal the injury. In some severe cases, you may even need to immobilize the area with a brace. Surgery is also an option for badly torn tendons.
Unfortunately, no matter what you do, sometimes a soft tissue injury can become permanent. This usually occurs when the tissues don’t heal properly and continue to tear over and over again. These repetitive tears weaken the muscles and the tendons and result in permanent damage.
Trust McCoy & Sparks—Premier Personal Injury Attorneys in Central Kentucky
If you experience a soft tissue injury following a car accident, your first steps should always be to take care of your health and safety. Even the most minor soft tissue injuries can develop into something worse if you ignore the issue. Once you have sought medical care, you should contact your local personal injury attorney to ensure you receive adequate compensation to cover your medical bills and other damages related to the accident.
Recognized as one of Central Kentucky’s best law firms for over a decade and counting, McCoy & Sparks works to help people in trouble, representing thousands of clients in Central Kentucky with a focus on providing premium service and delivering superior results.
Regardless of the type of case, our goal is to develop a strategy that best serves your personal needs, then draw upon our courtroom skills to help you reach the best possible result. We start by getting to know you. Next, we will explain all of your options, giving you the pros and cons of each choice so that you will be empowered to make informed decisions.You owe us nothing unless we recover compensation for you. Make the right call to (844) 4KY-WINS for a risk-free consultation with one of our attorneys today.