If you’re in a car accident, there is a possibility that you could sustain injuries from the seatbelt that is supposed to protect you. Some people have more injuries from the belt than they do from the damage to the car. While the seatbelt is supposed to lock in place if there is an impact of any kind or if the vehicle comes to a complete stop in only a few moments, the belt can cause lacerations, bruises, and even a few broken ribs. These are issues that an attorney can add to a claim that is filed after the car accident because you’ll have medical bills of some kind and possibly miss work because of the injuries received from the accident.
A common injury from seatbelts in a car accident is broken ribs or fractures to the ribs. You can also bruise the ribcage. Any kind of injury involving the ribs is painful because they tend to move when you breathe, cough or take a deep breath. It can take some time to recover from broken or bruised ribs. You need to seek medical attention as soon as possible if you suspect this kind of injury so that the healing process can begin and so that you can get pain medication for comfort. You can usually treat bruised ribs by putting ice packs on the area and trying to control your breathing.
The seatbelt sits across the chest. The force of a car accident can be so significant that it impacts the chest or the sternum. This is the bone where the ribs meet. It protects the heart and lungs. If this bone is broken, then there is a possibility of the lungs being punctured or something happening to the heart. The heart and lungs could also be shifted even slightly because of the impact from the accident. After the accident, you need to pay attention to how the chest feels because some injuries might not present right away.
Another area where the seatbelt sits is the shoulder. The belt can cut into the shoulder or cause tearing of the tissue in the shoulder. Sometimes, the belt can damage the tendons and the fibers of the muscles in the shoulder. This can be a painful injury that sometimes requires surgery. It’s also the type of injury that can increase the amount of compensation that you receive after a medical claim is filed by your attorney.
An area of the belt that can cause substantial injuries to the body is the part that crosses the abdomen. It’s not the first area that you think about after an accident, but it’s an area that is worth noting because of the organs that are in this area of the body. Some people receive injuries to the spleen, appendix or other organs that might otherwise not cause any issues at all. Pay attention to any bruising in this area of the body. Even without pain, there could be internal bleeding that is present from a laceration or other types of damage that are done to this area. It’s sometimes an injury that requires surgery, especially if bleeding becomes severe and can’t be controlled.
There are also typical lacerations and abrasions that the seatbelt can cause. The material of the seatbelt is often stiff cloth that can leave behind abrasions that you might get if you were to fall onto concrete or pavement. The imprint of the belt can be left behind as well. These are injuries that will go away, but they can still be painful. Your attorney can file the proper claims to get the compensation that you need and deserve after your accident so that medical bills can be paid and lost wages can be recovered.