There are many misconceptions surrounding car accidents. One is that only severe car accidents contribute to serious injuries. To the contrary, even a fender-bender can have lifelong repercussions for the survivor. Whiplash, for instance, is a serious ailment that many people do not take seriously enough.
What is whiplash?
Whiplash is the common name for a neck injury caused by a back-and-forth jerking motion. When the neck and skull experience rapid, forceful movement, it can damage the tissue, ligaments and muscle. Rear-end car crashes are one of the most common causes of whiplash. Some of the symptoms include:
- Neck pain
- Stiff neck and shoulders
- Numbness in arms
- Difficulty moving neck
- Headaches, especially at the base of the skull
Although most people who suffer whiplash recover within a few weeks, some cases last months, years or a lifetime.
What should I do if I think I have whiplash?
The first thing you should do if you experience any of the symptoms of whiplash is to see a doctor immediately. They can examine you carefully to determine whether you have trauma to your neck that indicates whiplash. If so, then you might need to undergo rehabilitative therapy or even surgery. Although this can be expensive, you might need it to end your physical pain and move forward with your life.
The more you know about whiplash, the better
Education is key to understanding the severity of whiplash and halt the misconceptions surrounding it. As we mentioned, far too many people do not consider whiplash a serious injury. If you hear someone disparaging whiplash as a minor ailment or a creation of malingerers, speak up and politely let them know the truth: that whiplash is a very painful and common reality for many car accident survivors.