What Happens If You Get into a Car Accident While Pregnant?
An estimated 170,000 car accidents involving pregnant women happen each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and car accidents are the leading cause of traumatic fetal death and injury and death for pregnant women. Interestingly, pregnant women are also 42% more likely to be involved in a serious car accident than when not carrying a child, according to University of Toronto research.
A car accident while pregnant can cause a number of risks and complications, including internal bleeding, miscarriage, and premature labor, as well as mental and emotional trauma. This is why it’s important to have a firm like Thomas J Henry Law on your side if you’ve been involved in a car accident while pregnant. Compensation procedures and navigating how to get the pregnancy car accident settlement you deserve require legal expertise.
What Should You Do If You’ve Been in a Car Accident While Pregnant?
Wondering what you should do if you have been in a car accident pregnant? Whether you have been in a severe or minor car accident while pregnant, we recommend staying calm and cautious. If able, move yourself to a secure location away from the roadway. If you are too injured to move, wait for help to arrive. You should seek immediate medical attention if you experience any loss of consciousness, vaginal bleeding, fluid leaking from the vagina, or pain in the pelvic region.
We also recommend seeing a doctor as soon as possible. This is true even if you don’t believe you were hurt. If you cannot see your doctor right away, you should seek emergency medical care if you develop any of the following conditions in the hours or days following a car accident while pregnant:
- Fever and chills
- Abdominal pain
- Constant and severe headaches
- Facial swelling
- Vaginal spotting or bleeding
- Painful urination
- A change in your baby’s movements
- Vomiting that is unrelated to morning sickness
Keep in mind that your doctor might choose to induce labor, depending on the circumstances, if your wellbeing or the wellbeing of your baby is at risk.
Pregnancy Complications Due to Car Accidents
Can a car accident cause a miscarriage? Here’s the necessary information you need to know about possible pregnancy and car accident complications:
- Contrecoup injury. This kind of injury happens when your body is forced in one direction before being jerked in another direction. This sudden movement, which often occurs when you need to brake to avoid a collision, can impact a fetus similarly to shaken baby syndrome. The fetus can suffer birth defects and developmental delays because of this injury.
- Placental abruption. This condition happens when the placenta is prematurely separated from the uterine wall. Potential complications for the baby when placental abruption occurs include low birth weight, premature birth, and poor physical development. The pregnant woman can also suffer severe blood loss and need a blood transfusion.
- Miscarriage. Miscarriage can sometimes happen during or after a car accident. Miscarriage is the accidental loss of a fetus before the 20th week of pregnancy. If the fetus loss occurs after 20 weeks of pregnancy, it is considered a stillbirth.
- Premature birth. Premature birth can also sometimes happen after a car accident. Babies born before the 37th week of pregnancy are seen as premature. Those born before the six-month mark are more likely to be born with severe medical issues, including the inability to eat, stay warm, or even breathe on their own. Some babies born prematurely can develop cerebral palsy, cognitive impairments, or other long-term disabilities.
Even if none of these tragic complications happen, you might need to be treated by a doctor who specializes in high-risk pregnancies. These specialists, also known as perinatologists or maternal-fetal specialists, offer necessary treatment that can exceed the costs associated with a normal pregnancy.
Wearing a Seatbelt While Pregnant
Do you need to wear a seatbelt while pregnant? Yes, doctors recommend that you wear a seatbelt through all stages of your pregnancy as the single most effective action you can take to protect yourself and your unborn child in a car accident. You should wear the seatbelt with the shoulder component away from your neck but not off your shoulder and across your chest between your breasts. The lap belt should be secured below your belly so that it fits snugly across both your pelvic bone and your hips.
Car Accidents and Pregnancy: Settlements
Dealing with injuries after any car accident can be very difficult, but it can be especially devastating and traumatic when you experience serious injuries during pregnancy. Not only are you struggling with the emotional trauma of the car accident and any complications that occurred, but you might also be dealing with some significant financial losses in the form of lofty medical bills, an inability to work, counseling costs, and more. That’s why we recommend consulting a lawyer to help you with a settlement for a car accident while pregnant.
Why You Should Hire a Lawyer
If you want to learn more about a car accident while pregnant settlement or rear-ended while pregnant settlement, look no further than the Texas auto accident attorneys at Thomas J Henry Law. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you settle your car accident while pregnant lawsuit.