Whiplash is a neck injury caused when the head continues to move forward while the body remains in the same place. This causes the neck and shoulder to suffer an injury known as Whiplash Associated Disorder or, simply, whiplash. The muscles, tendons, and ligaments in the neck suffer sprains or tears, which can cause substantial pain and suffering.
Oftentimes, whiplash occurs in rear-end accidents, when the force from a car moving quickly impacts a car at rest. The force that comes from behind causes the neck and head to travel in a forward motion, and then the neck and head snap violently back. However, it is important to note that car accidents are not the only types of accidents that can result in whiplash.
Many accident victims do not feel any symptoms of whiplash immediately following their accident. Oftentimes, this is due to adrenaline and cortisol that masks pain in stressful situations; however, hours or days after an accident, a victim may begin to notice:
- Back, shoulder, and neck pain
- Jaw pain
- Impaired vision
- Limited range of motion
- Muscle spasms
- Pain that worsens with movement
- Ear ringing
- Mood swings
- Difficulty concentrating
If you notice any of these symptoms at any time following any kind of accident, you should seek immediate medical attention. Even if you were seen after the accident by a medical professional before beginning to develop new or more serious symptoms, seek medical treatment.
Every case of whiplash will be different, and your medical provider will help determine your best steps for recovery. Oftentimes, diagnostic tests such as an MRI or CT scan are done in order to determine the extent of the injury. There may be other issues such as a traumatic brain injury that accompanies whiplash, and a qualified physician will want to ensure that all sources of your pain are discovered and treated.
If you are diagnosed with whiplash, you may have to wear a brace, undergo physical therapy, take pain medications, learn specific stretches, use chiropractic therapy, and rest. If you suffered whiplash injuries due to an accident resulting from someone else’s negligence, contact Schultz & Myers, LLC at 314-444-4444 to see how our whiplash injury lawyers in St. Louis can help ensure you receive the compensation to which you are entitled.
How Long Whiplash Lasts
Most victims of whiplash experience relief of pain and suffering within several weeks if they receive treatment following an accident; however, there are some victims of accidents that suffer whiplash pain and debilitating symptoms for years after an accident. In some cases, the effects of whiplash are permanent and cause life-long challenges to everyday functions. If your whiplash symptoms came on quickly, such as those in a severe accident, and included serious neck pain, headaches, and pain that spread to the arms, you may be more likely to experience long-term whiplash pain. Those victims who are elderly or have pre-existing neck pain or lower back issues may also suffer long-term whiplash pain.
Whiplash Insurance Claims
You will need to contact your insurance company to let them know you were involved in an accident that caused your whiplash injury. Make sure to never allow the insurance company to record your conversation. Additionally, only allow your insurance company to obtain medical records that directly relate to your accident. Also, never make comments such as “I am feeling better” or “I feel fine.” Insurance companies will oftentimes use phrases like this to attempt to only provide low settlement offers.
Additionally, as you wait for your insurance claim to process, make sure to always keep any appointments you may have with your medical providers to ensure that you receive appropriate medical care. Follow all recommendations by your doctors and medical team, and document all of your medical appointments, therapy, and pain and suffering.
Finally, you should consider suspending all of your social media accounts during this time. Anything you post, write, or comment on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram can be used by insurance companies to attempt to avoid payment of your claim.
Contact Schultz & Myers, LLC for a Free Consultation
If you suffered whiplash following an accident, you are likely facing medical bills, lost wages due to your inability to return to work, and disabling pain and stiffness. You may be entitled to compensation for those expenses as well as pain and suffering. Contact Schultz & Myers, LLC at 314-444-4444, and let our personal injury lawyers in St. Louis help you build a strong personal injury case so you can receive the compensation you are owed due to someone else’s carelessness and negligence.