Invisible injuries, the injuries that cannot be seen.

Invisible injuries, the injuries that cannot be seen.

For example, that would include injuries such as:  1) sprains and strains; 2) whiplash; 3) soft tissue; and 4) psychological, i.e., depression or post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

I bring this up because, all the time, people surrounding us suffer from injuries that we do not see or know about, and many of them do not necessarily show up on tests, like x-rays, MRI’s or blood work. Unfortunately, many folks are too quick to be judgmental and dismissive about these types of injuries.

In my work as a personal injury and workers’ compensation attorney representing injured individuals, I hear insurance adjusters belittle a person’s injuries by asserting that, “it’s only soft tissue” or “it’s only a sprain” or “everyone has depression” which means, according to the insurance company, it doesn’t matter as much.  Sadly, this negative attitude often reflects what the general population thinks, as well.

Perhaps it is worth noting that psychological injuries can be just as devastating as physical injuries.  Also, perhaps it is worth considering that a sprain in the ankle, knee or shoulder often takes longer to heal than a broken bone.  In fact, some sprains, strains and inflammations can plague a person with pain and limitations on a very chronic long term basis.  Ever heard of tennis elbow?  Finally, before minimizing the significance of whiplash pain that a person is experiencing to the neck and low back after being rear-ended in a car accident, consider that there’s always that person you know, maybe even yourself, where after that relatively minor car accident with the whiplash pain that followed it, the person’s neck or back was never the same again.

In other words, we would all be better off remembering that even though we cannot necessarily see sprain/strain injuries, whiplash injuries, other soft tissue injuries and psychological injuries, they are real, they are painful, they are often chronic in nature and they have the potential to be life altering.  It is simply wrong to jump to the conclusion and judge them minor or dismiss them as inconsequential, because when you are the person suffering from one of these injuries, they are anything but minor.  They are serious and they significantly impact a person.  They are painful and they can be debilitating.

If you have any of these injuries, or know anyone with these types of injuries, do not jump to the conclusion that they are only minor with nothing to do about them.  On the contrary, you should speak with an experienced personal injury or workers’ compensation attorney.  Look into your rights and your options.