You’ve probably heard the term “whiplash” before, but how much do you know about this phenomenon? There’s more to it than just a pain or stiffness in the neck. Whether you were rocking out a little too hard at a concert or have recently been in an accident, here’s what you need to know.
What is Whiplash?
Cervical strains, sprains, and hyperextension all fall under the term whiplash. These injuries take place in your soft tissue, which include your ligaments and tendons along with your muscles. While whiplash isn’t a medical term, it’s widely understood by the public as severe pain that can limit mobility.
While the most common way people experience whiplash is after a car accident, jarring situations like sports injuries and roller coasters can also be the culprit. Slips, falls, physical assault, and any amount of force on your neck can also bring about this injury.
The symptoms of whiplash vary from one case to the next, but there are a number of common signs you should be aware of. Those include:
- Difficulty concentrating
- Memory issues
- Lower back and shoulder pain
- Extreme neck pain
- Severe stiffness in the neck
Unfortunately, there’s not much you can do to prevent these types of accidents. Stretching before physical activity and wearing your seatbelt can help, but most accidents resulting in whiplash are out your control. That’s why it’s vital that you know how to treat this injury when it does happen.
The best way to treat whiplash is to simply move the muscles in your neck. The sooner you start working those muscles, the sooner you begin to heal. However, trying to do so is going to be incredibly painful. It helps to start with very gentle neck stretches and exercises.
Using heat to loosen the muscles and ice to help heal them will quicken the process. You can also massage your neck and take an over-the-counter medication like Ibuprofen to take some of the pain away.
In more severe instances, especially if your pain hasn’t lessened in a week, you may need to see your primary care physician for a diagnosis. They can refer you to a physical therapist, perform ultrasounds to assess the damage, and may suggest injections to kickstart the healing process.
While there are plenty of causes that place liability on the individual with whiplash, scenarios like a car accident may be caused by someone else’s negligence. If you’ve suffered whiplash through no fault of your own, then you have the right to seek compensation for your injury. You can also sue for economic expenses such as medical care and missed work.
Even with medical records from your doctor, it takes a skilled attorney like Denver car accident lawyer Jeremy Rosenthal to get you the compensation you deserve for whiplash. They can show the full extent of your injuries and economic hardships, helping you fight for every penny.