As an Oklahoma driver, you know how dangerous Oklahoma's roads and highways can be, especially during rush hour. Auto accidents occur far too frequently, and some of them seriously injure or kill the occupants of the vehicles involved. If you are unfortunate enough to have an auto crash, among the serious injuries you could suffer is nerve damage.
You probably never thought about it, but you have billions of nerves in your body. While each one serves a specific function, your nerves fall into the following three categories:
- Autonomic nerves control your body's involuntary internal movements and processes, such as letting you breathe, letting your heart pump blood throughout your body, letting your stomach digest the food you eat and letting your body regulate its internal temperature.
- Sensory nerves control your senses, allowing you to see, hear, smell, taste and touch; they also control your ability to feel pain.
- Motor nerves control your voluntary movements, such as walking, chewing, swallowing, smiling, shaking hands, picking up a tool, etc.
Symptoms of nerve damage
With all those nerves in your body, it is not surprising that you can sustain a wide range of different types of nerve damage in an auto crash. Consequently, nerve damage symptoms are very diverse and depend on which nerves you injured. In addition, you may notice some symptoms immediately after your accident, but you may not notice others for several days or even weeks.
Some relatively common nerve damage symptoms include the following:
- Severe pain
- Blurred vision and/or ringing in your ears
- Headaches, dizziness and loss of coordination
- Paralysis of one or more parts of your body
- Urinary and/or fecal incontinence
- Sexual dysfunction
It can be a good idea to seek medical help immediately after your accident, even if you do not believe you are seriously injured. In addition, you should seek further medical help if you begin having nerve damage symptoms later.
It can also be a good idea to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney prior to giving a statement to an insurance company, signing a release or agreeing to any settlement offer.
Prognosis for nerve damage victims
Your prognosis for recovery from your nerve damage depends on where in your body it occurred, which nerves you damaged, and how severe that damage is. Oftentimes you can make a full recovery, although this may take weeks or months during which you could experience severe pain.
With some types of nerve damage, however, you may require surgery, physical and occupational rehabilitation, and other forms of long-term care and therapy. In a worst case situation, you could have a permanent disability that leaves you unable to work. This is another good reason to speak with a knowledgeable personal injury attorney before accepting any settlement offers. You may wish to file a personal injury lawsuit against the driver who negligently caused your accident to attempt to recover damages for such things as your medical expenses, pain and suffering, and lost wages, both now and in the future.