Godwin, Morris, Laurenzi & Bloomfield, P.C.

Identifying the common symptoms of whiplash

Tennessee residents may be unaware of the American Chiropractic Association's recent report concerning whiplash. According to the agency, whenever a person is suddenly injured by being jolted back and forth, it is probable that an injury of the neck has been caused, called whiplash. One of the most common ways a person is injured in this manner is by the sudden impact of a car accident.

A number of structures can be injured when one suffers a whiplash injury, including the neck's ligaments and joints in the back and spine. Muscles and tendons can also be strained, potentially creating a herniation of the discs in the spine. Typically, the most common problem to identify in determining if someone has a whiplash injury is painful stiffness in the neck area. Headaches, dizziness, difficulty swallowing, blurred vision and nausea are other common indications. The symptoms may not show for up to 48 hours after an injury. Some of the symptoms may go away quickly, but in some cases, symptoms may not go away for months or even years.

Treating whiplash may involve chiropractic treatment or physical therapy. In less severe cases, the individual may be instructed to stay active and ice the neck every couple of hours. There is no real way to prevent whiplash; however, drivers are encouraged to wear lap and shoulder seat belts while in the car and adjust the headrest to the appropriate height.

If a car crash has led to whiplash and medical treatment is necessary, hiring a chiropractor or physical therapist can be expensive over time, especially since chiropractic treatment can be ongoing. If the injury was due to negligence on behalf of another driver, a personal injury attorney may be able to assist in helping an injured party to recover financial compensation for medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering.

Source: American Chiropractic Association , "Whiplash", January 04, 2015

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