One of the most common soft tissue injuries that can occur in a car accident is whiplash. While whiplash and whiplash related injuries are often seen as minor, especially in comparison to head and brain injuries, loss of limb, and other critical injuries that can occur in a car accident, it is actually a very serious condition. Here’s what you need to know about whiplash and whiplash related injuries, and what to do if you or someone you love were hurt in a car accident.
What Is Whiplash?
Whiplash occurs in a car accident when the force of the impact “whips” the head back and forth, stretching the muscles, ligaments, and vertebrae in the neck beyond what they are traditionally able to withstand. Whiplash can also be called a hyperextension injury, cervical strain, or a cervical sprain. Although whiplash most commonly occurs in car accidents, it can also occur in other accidents where the head and neck are whipped back and forth suddenly. Other accidents that can cause whiplash include sports injuries, blows to the face and head during an assault, and slipping and falling to the ground.
Symptoms of Whiplash
Whiplash can be extremely uncomfortable and even painful, both right after the accident and in the weeks, months, and even years following the collision. The most common symptoms of whiplash and whiplash related injuries include but are not limited to:
- A stiff or tight feeling in the neck
- Neck pain, usually achy or dull feeling
- Back pain
- Problems with memory
- Difficulty with concentration
While minor car accidents may result in whiplash that resolves on its own, serious car accidents can result in severe whiplash that causes extreme pain and discomfort that interrupts a victim’s daily life.
Whiplash must first be formally diagnosed in order to be treated. This is typically done with imaging scans, like an MRI. Once an individual has been diagnosed with a hyperextension injury like whiplash, treatment can begin. A physician may prescribe immobilization therapy, muscle relaxant medication, hot and cold therapy, massage therapy, and physical therapy to help a victim regain their range of motion.
Typically, whiplash injuries resolve in a matter of weeks with the correct treatment and therapies. However, in some cases it may take months and in rare cases, victims of whiplash may have chronic pain that lasts for many years.
When to Call a South Carolina Car Accident Lawyer
If you or a family member have suffered whiplash or a whiplash related injury, it is important to get medical treatment as soon as possible. However, the next step in protecting your rights and getting compensation for your medical care is to reach out to an experienced South Carolina car accident attorney.
At Guest & Brady, our lawyers can help you get adequate medical care and will zealously pursue the compensation and justice you deserve for your injuries. Contact us today to discuss your legal needs with one of our seasoned attorneys and to learn more about your rights and the next step. Call now at (864) 233-7200.