Many people will get at least a slight headache after a car collision even if they don’t hit their head on anything. This is reasonable. Our bodies were simply not designed to comfortably withstand an immediate deceleration from 20 or 30 MPH to zero. Many car collision headaches will go away relatively quickly, but some do not. If you have a headache that lasts more than a day or two after a car collision, you should definitely seek medical attention. It might be nothing, but it might be a sign of a more significant injury. Read the Brain Injury page for more info.
Soft Tissue Injury – Sprains and Strains
The soft tissues of the body are the body’s muscles. Connective tissues such as ligaments connect bones to bones, and tendons connect muscles to bones. A soft tissue injury is a bruise, stretch, or tear of the soft tissue. The medical terms for the injury differ depending on the body part. Technically, one strains a muscle or a tendon, but sprains a ligament or a joint.
Symptoms of muscle, tendon, and ligament injury include muscle aches and pain, joint pain, and limited flexibility and range of motion in the injured part of the body. Again, these symptoms can develop immediately after the collision or not for several days. A mild soft tissue injury will generally heal quickly, but a severe sprain or strain can linger for months. Think of a sprained ankle. Many people who have badly sprained an ankle have felt that it is worse than breaking a bone because it hurts a lot and takes so long to heal.