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How a Back Injury Affects Your Life

Back injuries are tricky things and can affect all aspects of your life. When you feel small pains or tweaks in your back, you may think it is just soreness or nothing significant – that it will go away. Or you can self-treat with some ice or heat for a few days. But back pain is something you should never ignore! If you have been in any type of accident, the damage to your back may be severe. The pain or discomfort may be mild initially but it can escalate and become debilitating in the blink of an eye. It is important to seek medical attention right away if you have been involved in an accident.

Physical Damage

Injuries from accidents, contact sports, and falls, can cause herniated discs, fractures, even severe damage to your spinal cord. The pain may be sharp and intense, or it may present itself as a dull numbness in one or more extremities. Arm or leg numbness is a common by-product of back pain. And the term numbness is extremely misleading. Most people think of numbness as a loss of feeling; however, numbness can be excruciatingly painful. Emergency signs and symptoms of a spinal cord injury after an accident include:
  • Extreme pain or pressure in your back, head, or neck
  • Weakness or the inability to move any part of your body
  • Numbness, tingling, or loss of sensation in your hands, fingers, feet, or toes
  • Loss of bladder or bowel control
  • Difficulty with balance and walking
  • Difficulty breathing
A back injury can affect nearly every aspect of your life. It can cause permanent damages to your strength, may limit your mobility, and cause other physical restrictions in your daily activities. You may suffer chronic and/or acute pain. Your ability to work may change, and consequently, your earnings. The financial hardship you could encounter because of ongoing medical treatments, including physical therapy, chiropractic care, medications, possibly even surgeries, can be overwhelming and stressful – for you and your family. And any significant back injury will most certainly result in a loss of enjoyment of life. You can feel the effect of a back injury emotionally, mentally, and socially.

Loss of Enjoyment of Life

Loss of enjoyment of life covers a wide range of activities, many of which you may not consider when first dealing with a new back injury. Loss of enjoyment of life refers to any activity that you participated in before your injury that you are no longer able to do in the same manner or to the same degree that you did previously. Simply stated, the things you enjoyed that you can no longer enjoy as fully. A few examples are:
  • Sit and watch your child’s baseball or soccer game,
  • Go to the movies,
  • Travel – sitting in a plane or in a car,
  • Playing sports
  • Hobbies, such as gardening, dancing,
  • Picking up and holding your child or grandchild
Additionally, chronic pain can cause loss of enjoyment of life. The stress from having chronic pain can disrupt your ability to sleep, cause changes in your moods, give you anxiety and depression. All these things will also take an emotional toll on you and your loved ones.

Treatment and Recovery

Treatment for back pain and injury can be life-long, and often is a process of finding the right treatment for you and your injuries. What works for one person, does not work for everyone. Some of the most common treatment options are : Physical therapy – both active and passive therapy. Active physical therapy consists of exercises you perform on your own or with monitoring. Passive physical therapy is exercise or motions someone will do to you, usually a physical therapist or associate. Chiropractic care, spinal manipulation, acupuncture, and massage therapy can help manage pain as well. Medication is also usually prescribed to assist with managing pain and inflammation. Some medications can be extremely strong and become addictive. Caution should be used when taking any opiate medication. Be sure to communicate clearly with your doctor about your pain level, and treatment options. Surgery – when the injuries are severe, surgery may be required. Depending on the surgery, recovery time can be as quick as a few weeks, or months to heal. Pain management therapy is often recommended to manage chronic pain. Counseling can help you to deal with any depression that is frequently associated with chronic pain.

Compensation

If you have been injured due to someone else’s negligence, you are entitled to fair and appropriate compensation for your economic losses, as well as damages for pain and suffering. Our personal injury attorneys at Battaglia, Ross, Dicus & McQuaid want to help ensure your rights are protected. Damages for pain and suffering are subjective and determining appropriate compensation is at the discretion of the jury. Things juries consider when determining compensation are:
  • The likelihood of future pain and suffering.
  • How long will it last?
  • Is it intermittent (does it come and go?) Or is it chronic (constant and painful every day?)
  • Will physical therapy or other treatment lessen the pain or remove it entirely at some point?
  • The age of the person injured, their health, and employment history.
  • Did they have any preexisting conditions that also contribute to the pain and suffering?

Consult a Trusted, Knowledgeable Attorney

These are just a few of the factors that must be clearly understood, to put you in the best possible position to be awarded fair and appropriate compensation. Battaglia, Ross, Dicus & McQuaid has years of experience working with clients just like you. We are here to listen to your story, answer all the questions you may have, and explain the options available to you. We will provide you with the best advice for your specific situation. We can help you find doctors, therapists, rehabilitation services, and counseling for you and your family if needed. And don’t worry about the mounting medical bills – we will work to ensure the negligent party is held accountable. Schedule a free consultation today to get started or to get any questions answered.

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