Whiplash is so commonly used after a car accident. Unfortunately, it is sometimes used to minimize the injuries after a car accident – “You just have whiplash.” Knowledge is power so let’s look into what whiplash really is.
According to the Mayo Clinic, whiplash is a neck injury due to forceful, rapid back-and-forth movement of the neck, like the cracking of a whip. Common signs and symptoms include neck pain, stiffness and headaches. Other symptoms associated with whiplash include:
- Neck pain and stiffness
- Worsening of pain with neck movement
- Loss of range of motion in the neck
- Headaches, most often starting at the base of the skull
- Tenderness or pain in the shoulder, upper back or arms
- Tingling or numbness in the arms
A whiplash injury occurs because the neck moves beyond its normal range of movement, resulting in overstretched ligaments, muscles, and tendons. The injury is made worse because the muscles, in order to compensate for the sudden movement, pull the head back into position too hard, causing another overstretching in the opposite direction. These sudden actions can cause serious injuries to the ligaments and muscles that support the head.
Although many cases of whiplash injuries can resolve within weeks or months, a high percentage of them require extensive medical care to reduce the residuals caused by the neck being violently outstretched. Treatment includes:
- Chiropractic Care
- Physical Therapy
Soft foam cervical collars were once commonly used for whiplash injuries to hold the neck and head still. However, studies have shown that keeping the neck still for long periods of time can decrease muscle strength and interfere with recovery.
Hopefully, you never have to experience the pain of a whiplash injury, but remember, those who sustain this type of injury do suffer and it is never “just whiplash.”
Attorneys Matthew Noyes and Lorrie Robinson help families who are impacted by a Tampa Bay car accident. Attorney Matthew Noyes even wrote a book on it – Do You Really Need An Attorney After a Car Accident. If you have questions after a car accident, call Personal Injury Attorney Matthew Noyes at 727-796-8282 or simply click here to schedule a free case consultation.