Studies show that children are more likely to suffer a facial injury from a dog bite compared to adults, and it makes sense why. A dog of any breed can easily reach the face or neck of a child, and statistics show that children ages 1 to 14 suffer neck and face injuries in two-thirds of all dog bites involving children (66 percent), according to the American Veterinary Medical Association.
Our dog attack attorney Los Angeles, who has personally handled dozens of dog bite lawsuits involving facial injuries in children under the age of 14, explains that facial dog bites are more common among children due to their small size.
“Needless to say, facial dog bite injuries can result in permanent scarring and even disfigurement, both of which can significantly diminish the child’s quality of life,” says our Los Angeles dog bites attorney at Law Offices of Howard Craig Kornberg. Although it can be difficult to put the psychological and emotional impact of scarring and disfigurement caused by dog bites into a dollar figure, our lawyers warn you against accepting any settlement offer from insurance companies unless you have consulted with a personal injury attorney.
The physical, psychological, and emotional impact of facial dog bite injuries
As you may have guessed, the value of your personal injury claim after a facial dog bite will go through the roof if your lawyer can help you establish the long-term effects and consequences caused by the facial injury to your child. More often than not, children who have suffered facial dog bite injuries will experience all of the following:
- Physical aspect: Injuries to the face and neck can be very painful and may take years or decades to heal. If a child’s face has been damaged to the extent that he or she requires plastic surgery to reconstruct tissue damage or mask the visible effects of the facial injury, the child will have to endure even more pain as these procedures can be quite painful.
- Psychological aspect: While the pain will eventually fade away, disfigurement and permanent scarring on a child’s face will continue to negatively affect the child’s sense of self-worth and self-esteem. It will serve as a constant reminder of the dog attack and bring back all the memories, pain, and suffering caused by the bite.
- Emotional aspect: In addition to the physical and psychological aspects, a child who has suffered a facial injury in a dog attack will most likely develop insecurities about his/her appearance, which may take a toll on his/her self-esteem. Looking in the mirror and seeing a noticeable scar can be tough for any adult, but it can be especially traumatizing for children, teenagers, and young adults, as their low self-esteem can negatively affect their quality of life as well as their ability to develop romantic relationships and friendships. Most children with visible facial scars after dog bites also tend to avoid social interactions and isolate themselves from many activities that bring joy. In the most extreme cases, the child who has suffered a facial injury may develop suicidal thoughts and require lifelong counseling.
The most common facial injuries caused by dog attacks
Our dog attack attorney in Los Angeles has outlined some of the most common facial injuries caused by dog bites:
- Permanent scarring;
- Broken nose and fractures of other bones in the face;
- Nerve damage and paralysis;
- Dental injuries;
- Brain injuries; and
- Amputation of nose, ears, or other facial parts.