A spinal cord injury can make it difficult for you to go back to work and do normal daily activities after an accident. The National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center states that every year, around 17,810 people suffer a spinal cord injury and approximately 294,000 people live with one of these injuries in the U.S.
The severity of the injury and the location of the injury on your spinal cord will affect your ability to control your limbs. As a result, you may experience a wide range of symptoms.
Two of the most common signs that you have a spinal cord injury include loss of movement and loss of sensation. You may also have a hard time controlling your bladder and have exaggerated spasms.
When the injury is new, you may experience a stinging sensation due to the damaged nerve fibers along your spinal cord. Additionally, you may have a hard time breathing and develop a cough.
When to seek medical care
After the accident, you should see a doctor for an immediate medical evaluation if you experience serious trauma to your neck or head. Even if you do not experience any of the symptoms listed above, it is always safest to assume you could have spinal issues.
You should receive prompt medical attention because spinal injuries are not always obvious at first and they can get worse if not recognized quickly. As the swelling increases around your spinal cord, numbness and paralysis can become more and more apparent.