Each of these conditions can profoundly impact a person’s quality of life. They can make it difficult to perform everyday tasks. And sometimes, they can even lead to long-term disability. The most common back injuries from car accidents are:

  • whiplash;
  • fractured vertebrae;
  • lower back pain, and more.

There were about 31,785 traffic fatalities in 2022. Although there are much more ordinary accidents with injuries! So it’s essential for anyone involved in a car accident to find medical attention as soon as possible. Even if you do not feel pain or notice any symptoms, don’t hesitate. Some back injuries can take time to develop. It may not show up for a lot of days after the accident. Early diagnosis and treatment can help minimize the injury’s long-term impact. In such a way, you can prevent it from becoming more serious over time.

Read on to find out if you have back injury symptoms. With our help, you will better understand what kind of back injury you have!

Back Injury Symptoms After a Car Accident

It is typical to experience symptoms such as: 

  • neck and back pain;
  • headaches;
  • dizziness;
  • fatigue.

In some cases, these symptoms may not appear until several days after the accident. People can also feel:

  • numbness;
  • tingling;
  • weakness in the arms or legs.

These symptoms can be a sign of a more serious injury such as a herniated disc. Don’t waste your time if you experience any of them after a car accident. Get help from medical specialists as soon as possible.

Diagnosing back injuries after a car accident may involve X-rays, CT scans, or MRIs. Treatment options include: 

  • pain medication;
  • physical therapy;
  • chiropractic treatment;
  • surgery in severe cases.

Following your doctor’s recommendations for treatment and follow-up appointments is essential. It would ensure proper healing and minimize the risk of long-term pain and disability.

Don’t self-diagnose! You may have symptoms similar to those related to a back injury. But the main thing is to eliminate the root cause. Maybe it relates to something completely different!

car accident back injuries

Top 6 Common Back Injuries From Car Accidents

Here top common back injuries from car accidents:

  • Whiplash. This injury resulted from the sudden movement of the neck during a car accident. 
  • Herniated discs. They occur when the soft tissue between the vertebrae in the spine bulges out, putting pressure on the nerves. 
  • Fractured vertebrae. The main reason for this injury is the severe impact of a car accident. It can result in chronic pain and mobility issues.
  • Sprains and strains. They are also a common type of back injury from car accidents. As the body can be thrown around and put under stress during the collision. 
  • Lower back pain. A variety of factors can cause that injury. That can include spinal misalignment, muscle spasms, and pinched nerves. 
  • Soft tissue injuries. They can be a result of the accident’s impact and can be incredibly painful and slow to heal.

Back injuries from car accidents can be a painful and debilitating experience. It is essential to understand the most common types of injuries. In such cases, you will be able to identify them early on and receive proper treatment. Let’s take a look at them more deeply!


Whiplash is a result of the rapid movement of the head and neck in opposite directions. This sudden force can result in damage to the muscles, tendons, and ligaments in the neck. This car accident injury can also cause damage to the spinal cord and nerve roots. That all leads to symptoms such as pain and headaches. Sometimes to neck stiffness and decreased range of motion.

The severity of whiplash symptoms can vary from person to person. It can range from mild to severe. In some cases, whiplash can be a long-term condition that requires ongoing treatment. Also, you may need management from a pain management specialist. We recommend that drivers and passengers use headrests correctly and wear seat belts. It can help to reduce the risk of developing whiplash in a car accident.

Early diagnosis and treatment can help reduce the risk of long-term symptoms. Therefore you can improve the chances of a full recovery. Injury is treated by physical therapy, chiropractic care, and pain management techniques.

Herniated Disc

Such car accident injury occurs when the soft material inside a spinal disc bulges out and puts pressure on surrounding nerves. This can cause pain, numbness, and weakness in the affected area. The reason for herniated discs hides in injury, aging, and degenerative diseases. Symptoms of a herniated disc may vary depending on the location and severity of the injury. But they can include lower back pain, sciatica, and leg pain.

Doctors diagnose a herniated disc by a physical exam, imaging tests, and sometimes nerve tests and prescribe treatment like physical therapy, pain medication, epidural injections, or in some cases, surgery. A pain management doctor can work with you to determine the best course of treatment. He analyses your specific condition and helps you manage your pain.

Fractured Vertebrae

This type of back injury from car accidents is a serious injury. It occurs when a vertebral bone in the spine is broken. It is often the result of a high-impact accident such as a car crash, fall, or sports injury. Symptoms of a fractured vertebra can include severe back pain, numbness, or tingling in the legs. In some cases, there is also difficulty moving or walking.

Diagnosis of a fractured vertebra typically involves imaging tests. This involves an X-ray, CT scan, or MRI. Treatment options can vary depending on the injury’s severity, including bed rest, physical therapy, pain management, and surgery in severe cases.

Failing to treat this injury properly can result in long-term complications. So it is better to use the help of healthcare specialists.

Sprains and Strains

These are two of the most common types of back injuries sustained from car accidents. Sprains happen when the fibrous tissue that connects bones, known as ligaments, is stretched or torn. On the other hand, strains occur when the fibrous tissue that connects muscle to bone, known as tendons, is stretched or torn. The force of impact can cause both during a car accident. Sometimes due to twisting or bending awkwardly.

Symptoms of sprains and strains include pain, swelling, and bruising, and can also result in difficulty moving the affected area. Treatment typically involves rest, ice, compression, and elevation of the affected area, along with physical therapy and pain management techniques. In some cases, surgery may be necessary to repair torn ligaments or tendons.

Lower Back Pain

This type of pain is typically caused by strain or injury to the muscles, ligaments, or discs in the lower back. But this back injury is not always the result of a car accident. Some of the most typical causes of lower back pain include poor posture and sitting for long periods. Repetitive motions, heavy lifting, and certain medical conditions can also cause this injury. The last ones can include arthritis or osteoporosis.

In order to treat lower back pain, it is important to address the underlying cause. Treatment may involve physical therapy, pain medications, chiropractic adjustments, or other conservative methods. In some cases, surgery may be necessary. It can alleviate severe pain or correct structural issues.

Soft Tissue Injuries

Soft tissue injuries refer to harm to the muscles, tendons, and ligaments in the body. These types of injuries are typical in car accidents, mainly because they develop from high-impact collisions. They can cause pain, swelling, and limited mobility. In some cases, they can also lead to long-term chronic pain and disability.

Diagnosing such injuries can be challenging. They often do not show up on traditional imaging tests such as MRI scans. Instead, a doctor may perform a physical examination. He also assesses the patient’s symptoms and motion range. Treatment for soft tissue injuries typically involves rest and ice treatment. Sometimes also, physical therapy and over-the-counter pain medications. In some cases, a doctor may recommend more invasive treatments. They involve cortisone injections or surgery.


What are the three most common types of back injury?

The three most common types of back injury from car accidents are: u003cbru003e- whiplash;u003cbru003e- herniated discs;u003cbru003e- lower back pain;u003cbru003eThese types of injuries can result from the force of impact during a car accident.u003cbru003e

How long will my back hurt after a car accident?

The duration of back pain after a car accident can vary greatly. Some people may experience only short-term discomfort. While others may suffer from chronic pain that lasts for months or years. The severity and duration of back pain can depend on the type and extent of the injury.

What symptoms occur later after a car accident?

Delayed symptoms include headaches, neck and shoulder pain, fatigue, and dizziness. In some cases, these symptoms may not appear until days or even weeks after the accident. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to see a doctor. Make it as soon as possible to determine the cause and begin appropriate treatment.