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How Do You Know If Your Ribs Are Bruised or Broken After an Accident?

Car accidents can be incredibly traumatic, and even if you walked away seemingly unscathed, there could still be underlying injuries that you’re not aware of, like rib bruises or fractures. Rib injuries are common in car accidents and can cause a lot of pain and discomfort for the victim. Read on to learn how to tell if your ribs are bruised or broken, and what you can do to treat this painful injury.


Rib injuries can vary in severity, which is why it’s essential to identify the symptoms. If your ribs are bruised, you’ll experience pain or discomfort when you breathe, cough, or sneeze, but the pain intensity will be lower than that of broken ribs. You may also see bruising on your chest, depending on how hard the impact was. If your ribs are broken rather than only bruised, you will feel intense sharp pain, especially when you inhale deeply. The broken rib may also create a bulge or deformity in your chest.


If you suspect you’ve bruised or broken your ribs, it’s crucial to seek medical attention immediately. Your doctor may order an X-ray, which can help determine if your ribs are broken and, if so, how severe the fracture is. In some cases, your doctor might also order a CT scan or MRI.


If your ribs are only bruised, your doctor may recommend over-the-counter pain relievers or prescription medication. They may also advise you to wear a chest wrap or compression bandage to help alleviate pain and discomfort. If you have broken ribs, the treatment process will be different, depending on the severity of the fracture. More severe cases might require hospitalization and surgery. In any case, your doctor will advise you not to engage in strenuous activities or exercise until you are fully healed.

Healing Time

The average healing time for bruised ribs is about six weeks, while broken ribs can take anywhere from six weeks to several months to fully heal. During this time, it’s crucial to take things slow and give yourself the time you need to recover fully. You may also benefit from physical therapy which can help improve your range of motion and strengthen your rib cage.

Heal From a Car Accident Rib Injury With the Help of Impact Medical Group

Rib injuries can be incredibly painful, and if left untreated, they can cause serious long-term damage. If you’ve been involved in a car accident, call the caring team at Impact Medical Group of Port Richey at (727) 848-3377 to schedule your free medical evaluation. We’ll help you take the proper steps to care for your injury, giving you the best chance for a full and speedy recovery.