Even though vehicle safety has advanced considerably in recent decades, car accidents continue to kill an alarming number of Americans every single year. In fact, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, roughly 43,000 Americans died in motor vehicle accidents in 2021 alone.
Many of these individuals did not die immediately, of course, with some undoubtedly succumbing to shock in the aftermath of their car accidents. Therefore, if you suffer some type of traumatic injury in a crash, you should watch carefully for the symptoms of shock to appear.
What is shock?
Shock is a potentially deadly medical event that occurs when blood pressure drops too low. If you are in shock, your organs are not likely to receive the blood and oxygen they need to survive. Consequently, being in shock may put you at risk of dying or suffering additional catastrophic injuries after your car accident.
What are the symptoms of shock?
It may be tempting to ignore the symptoms of shock, especially if you are trying to be brave. Nevertheless, you should call 911 immediately if you notice one or more of the following symptoms:
- Dizziness, confusion, or disorientation
- Muscular weakness, fatigue or loss of consciousness
- Pale, clammy or ashy skin
- Mood changes, such as irritability or nervousness
- Fast heart rate or rapid breathing
How do doctors treat shock?
Shock is a medical emergency, so you should rely on competent doctors to develop your treatment plan. Medications to increase your blood pressure may be necessary. Doctors should administer these under close supervision, though.
Ultimately, by going to the emergency room for symptoms of shock after a car accident, you are likely to improve your odds of recovering completely and returning to your normal life.