What To Do If You Have Headaches After A Car Accident

What To Do If You Have Headaches After A Car Accident

If you have recently been in a car accident and subsequently developed headaches, you should seek medical advice and evaluation immediately if you have not already done so. Headaches are a symptom of some serious and life-threatening head and neck injuries, therefore time is of the essence. A car accident can be traumatic on the body, even if the car accident was only a minor one. In response to the emotional impact of an accident, bodies can produce an increased amount of adrenaline. According to Medical News Today, this adrenaline rush can have several effects including the following:

  • Decreasing our bodies’ ability to feel pain
  • Temporarily increasing our strength
  • Increasing our ability to mentally focus

If you experienced a headache following a car accident, you may have the right to receive compensation for your injuries and losses. Contact our experienced auto accident attorneys today at Fletcher Law Office at (816) 631-2868 for a free evaluation of your car accident case.

Types and Causes of Headaches from Car Accidents

In many cases, it can be challenging for a medical professional to determine what exactly is causing your headache after a car accident. There can be a variety of serious head injuries that could potentially cause headaches. Some of the causes of headaches after a car accident can include:


According to the Mayo Clinic, whiplash is typically caused by a rapid back-and-forth motion of the neck that can occur in car accidents, particularly with rear-end crashes. While whiplash is sometimes a minor injury and can resolve on its own with adequate rest and treatment, some cases of whiplash can be severe and long-lasting. Other symptoms of whiplash, apart from a headache, can include neck stiffness, loss of range of neck motion, tingling and numbness in arms, and others.

Post-Traumatic Headache 

According to the United States National Library of Medicine, a post-traumatic headache may not appear for several days, or even weeks, after a car accident, and is usually caused by trauma to the neck and head. Post-traumatic headache is classified as chronic if it lasts for more than two months after an accident. These types of headaches can originate in the neck or the brain as a result of concussion. Chronic post-traumatic headaches can also be a symptom of traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Muscle-Spasm or Muscle Contraction Headache

This type of headache can occur if the muscles of the head or neck are injured and tightened after a car accident. Muscle-spasm headaches can come with a reduced range of motion as well as swelling. While not necessarily a serious condition in itself, if this type of headache is particularly painful and long-lasting, you should consult a doctor in order to rule out other serious conditions. 

Headache Due to a Skull Fracture

Perhaps one of the most serious injuries a car accident victim can suffer is a fractured skull. Symptoms of a fractured skull can be an intense and persistent headache, a lump or dent on the head, confusion, dizziness, and loss of consciousness, among others. A fractured skull can be a life-threatening condition requiring emergency medical treatment.

Headache from a Pinched Nerve

Also called “Occipital Neuralgia Headache,” a pinched nerve after a car accident can cause headaches that originate in the neck area. The pain from a compressed nerve can travel up the back of the head. There may also be other symptoms such as pain, numbness, and tingling near the base of the skull. 

Post-Concussion Headache

Car accidents can cause concussion injuries and associated headaches. Post-concussion headaches may feel like migraines or tension headaches. Other symptoms pointing to a post-concussion headache can be nausea, confusion, light and sound sensitivity, balance problems, insomnia, and others. While symptoms typically go away within a few months, post-concussion headaches can persist for a year or more in some patients.

Steps To Take If You Have a Headache After A Car Accident 

If you suffered headaches after a car accident, consider taking the following steps.

Seek Medical Evaluation 

It can be difficult to know whether your headache is harmless or in fact the symptom of a traumatic brain injury. Therefore, if you experienced a car accident, you should see a doctor or medical professional right away, even if you are not yet suffering from any major symptoms. A doctor can provide a comprehensive evaluation to ensure that there are no additional serious injuries present. Additionally, if you have already received a medical evaluation, but begin to experience additional symptoms or a worsening of symptoms you should always return to your healthcare provider for another evaluation. 

After seeking medical evaluation and treatment for your headache, you should consider visiting with an experienced car accident attorney to determine if you have the legal right to receive compensation for your injuries and losses if someone else was responsible for your car accident. In order to pursue justice and compensation, you will need a medical report from your healthcare provider stating any injuries you suffered in an accident. For the sake of your health as well as for preserving your legal rights, seeking medical advice can be absolutely critical. 

Learn more about your legal rights by visiting with an experienced personal injury attorney, who can determine whether you have a claim and could recover compensation for any medical bills, pain and suffering, and other losses. Call us for a free consultation today at Fletcher Law Office today at (816) 631-2868 to ensure your legal rights remain protected. 

What compensation can I get for my car accident headaches?

The type of compensation you can receive for car accident headaches will depend on the severity and length of time spent in treatment. Generally speaking, individuals may recover economic or non-economic damages for their injuries. Economic damages cover any medical expenses incurred due to the accident such as:

  • Hospital bills
  • Doctor visits
  • Physical therapy sessions
  • Medication costs

While non-economic damages include more subjective losses that cannot be quantified such as emotional distress and loss of enjoyment of life.

In some cases where there is clear negligence on behalf of another party involved in the accident, punitive damages may also be awarded if deemed necessary by a jury or court based on the circumstances surrounding the incident. Punitive damages are usually added onto already existing awards to further punish an entity engaging in wrongful conduct and deter them from repeating said behavior in future incidents.

It is important to note that each personal injury case is unique so it is best to speak with an experienced legal professional about your individual situation for advice tailored specifically to you. A knowledgeable car accident lawyer will have a better understanding of what types of compensation—economic or non-economic—you may be eligible for should your case go forward successfully. Additionally, they understand how insurance companies operate when settling claims and can work towards achieving best

What are the treatment options for headaches from a car accident?

Headaches following a car accident can be caused by several different factors, including whiplash, concussion, or even emotional trauma. Some of the most common treatment options for someone suffering from car accident headaches include mediation, and other non invasive options like chiropractic treatment or physical therapy.


One of the most common treatments is over-the-counter pain medication to address any potential inflammation or muscle tension that may be causing the headache. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen can help reduce inflammation while providing relief from pain. Acetaminophen can also help with relief from mild to moderate headaches. However, if more severe pain is present, a stronger prescription medication may be necessary.

Physical therapy

Another treatment option includes physical therapy. Specific exercises can help improve range of motion in the neck and upper back muscles, reducing strain in those areas that can lead to headaches. Furthermore, physical therapists are trained to assess any abnormal curvatures in the spine or other postural issues that could contribute to continued headaches following a car accident.

Cognitive therapy

In some cases, further interventions such as cognitive behavioral therapy may be necessary for those with persistent headaches due to emotional trauma from a car accident. Cognitive behavioral therapists will work with patients to identify and make changes to problematic thoughts and behaviors that contribute to their symptoms in order to provide long-term relief from their headaches.


Finally, acupuncture has also been shown to provide relief from both acute and chronic headaches caused by car accidents. Acupuncture works by stimulating specific points along pathways called meridians which allow energy flow within your body; this stimulation increases blood circulation which helps relax muscle tension associated with the headache while allowing oxygenation of tissue around the area affected by pain.

Treating headaches after a car accident requires an individualized approach based on a comprehensive evaluation of your symptoms as well as an analysis of any underlying causes that could be contributing your condition; accordingly it is important to speak with your doctor about what treatment options are best suited for you so that you may get appropriate care during this time and avoid potential long-term effects from the injury sustained during the accident.

Why are headaches so common in car accidents?

Headaches after a car accident are very common due to the shock and stress of a traumatic event. The impact of a crash can cause whiplash, which can lead to tension-type headaches or even migraines. Whiplash is the sudden jerking motion that occurs when your head is thrown back and forth in an auto collision, leading to damage of soft tissues in your neck which can cause inflammation or irritation of nerves that supply sensation to your head and face. This irritation causes pain signals to travel up into your brain, leading to both headache symptoms as well as other associated symptoms such as:

  • Neck pain
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Memory problems depending on how intense the trauma was during impact.

In addition, any direct trauma suffered by the head during a collision can also result in more severe headaches if there were fractures or concussions involved.

Learn How You Can Receive Compensation For Your Headaches After a Car Accident

If another driver’s negligence or recklessness caused your car accident and your injuries, you have the right to pursue justice as well as compensation. Severe persistent headaches can be debilitating and potentially cause loss of income as well as a severe loss of life quality. Head injuries from a car crash can also result in financial hardship for victim, as well as their families. 

Unfortunately, in some cases, it can be difficult to get a full and fair settlement offer from an insurance company. An experienced car accident attorney can help you potentially recover compensation for your medical bills, hospital stays, property damage, lost wages, out-of-pocket expenses, psychological distress, and pain and suffering. Consider visiting with an experienced personal injury attorney today at Fletcher Law Office at (816) 631-2868 for a free, no-obligation consultation to learn more about your legal rights.