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How to Recognize Delayed Accident Symptoms

In a previous blog post, we discussed the dangers of delayed accident symptoms. Today we will be going over how you can identify the warning signs of a delayed injury, what they mean, and how the Houston rehab professionals at QualCare Rehabilitation can help.

It is important to keep in mind that injuries may not start displaying symptoms for days or weeks after an accident. This has an impact on both your medical care and your personal injury claim if you are pursuing one. Though these symptoms may seem unrelated to an accident, it is important to have them examined by a medical professional before writing them off. Delayed accident symptoms can lead to some of the most severe and long-lasting consequences without medical intervention.

If you have experienced any delayed accident symptoms, contact our Houston rehab doctors today at (713) 588-0042.

Headaches, Dizziness, Confusion & Other Concussion Symptoms

Head injuries should never be ignored. Unfortunately, concussions do not always manifest symptoms right away. If your head was impacted in any way during the accident, or if you experienced a whiplash effect, then you should tell the doctor this when you seek medical attention. It may take some time for the symptoms of a concussion to appear.

Delayed concussion symptoms include:

  • Dizziness
  • Pressure in the head
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Confusion
  • Memory gaps
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Delayed response to questions
  • Slurred speech

You should seek medical attention if these symptoms persist for more than a day, or immediately if you experience loss of consciousness or slurred speech.

Treatment for concussion typically involves rest and close monitoring of your condition. Even resting activities, such as watching TV or reading a book, can worsen the symptoms of a concussion. A medical professional should be made aware of your condition so you can plan out an appropriate treatment plan.

Muscle Spasms, Aches & Pain

Some muscle aches and pains may not appear until several days after an accident occurs. It’s difficult to say what is causing these muscle pains without knowing the details of your accident, but typically they occur when the muscled are overstretched or otherwise strained in an accident. This causes the muscles and tissue to inflame. Sometimes this inflammation develops slowly, and it may take a while for you to experience the first painful symptoms.

When muscles are in pain, the brain sends out signals telling them to retract in an attempt to protect them. Unfortunately, this causes them to tighten and spasm- the ultimate result being spasming muscles caught between inflamed tissues.

There are many possible treatments for muscle spasms and aches. Our rehab specialists will need to carefully analyze your condition and create a treatment plan based on what we learn. Sometimes treatment is as simple as practicing pain management until the body naturally heals, while more severe injuries require a more direct approach.


Though often a result of fatigue and stress, insomnia after a car accident could be a symptom of a concussion. If you have had consistent difficulty sleeping after an accident, you should schedule an appointment with a doctor.

Car accident insomnia could be caused by:

  • PTSD – Many people experienced PTSD after a serious car accident. PTSD manifests in many ways, including insomnia. You should discuss the possibility with your doctor. Insomnia caused by accident PTSD could affect your insurance claims or pending injury lawsuit.
  • Head injuries – Sometimes insomnia is caused by a more physical problem. As mentioned above, head injuries are not always readily apparent after an injury. If your insomnia is related to a head injury, it is critical you have a medical examination as soon as possible.

We need to know the cause of your insomnia before recommending any treatment. Call us today at (713) 588-0042 if you have had difficulty sleeping after being injured in a car accident.


Nausea is another delayed accident symptom that can be mental, physical, or both. It could be that your stomach was bruised by a seat belt during the crash, or that a concussion is causing feelings of dizziness and vertigo. Anxiety and stress from PTSD can also contribute to feelings of nausea. Regardless of the cause, nausea after a car accident is a telltale sign that you need further medical attention.

Nausea is not a symptom that you should ignore. While not always serious, there are cases where the nausea is caused by a brain injury, whiplash, or organ damage. These conditions need to be treated as soon as you notice the symptoms.

Localized Numbness or Weakness

If you start to lose feeling in an area of your body, or you feel like it’s more difficult to move one of your arms or legs, these could be symptoms of nerve damage. The effects of nerve damage sometimes start manifesting slowly over time. You will want to start treating this condition as soon as possible, as it often gets worse over time.

Symptoms of nerve damage include:

  • Increased sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures
  • Muscle weakness and pain
  • A tingling sensation in an area of the body
  • Frequent muscle twitches
  • Paralysis in the limbs

Nerve damage treatment outcomes are typically better when caught early. At QualCare Rehabilitation, our rehab specialists have treated many patients who have car accident-related nerve damage.

Don’t Hesitate to Seek the Treatment You Need

After an accident, you may become hypervigilant about any discomfort you experience for the next few days. You may start worrying that every little twinge or discomfort is the sign of a major problem. It is important to stay calm and relax. You should definitely consult with a medical professional if you experience any delayed symptoms, but you should not jump to the worst conclusions.

At QualCare Rehabilitation, our knowledgeable team can discuss your symptoms and provide you with a realistic idea of what they really mean. We treat victims of car accidents every day, and we understand what these symptoms typically mean.

Call (713) 588-0042 to set up an appointment with our Houston injury rehab professionals today.