Facts about Whiplash Injuries (Part A)

Whiplash is a soft tissue injury that occurs when the neck is suddenly forced forward and then whips backwards, stretching beyond the neck's normal capacity. Soft tissue refers to the muscles, nerves, tendons and ligaments that surround and support cartilage and bones.  Whiplash injuries are often the result of rear end collisions.

Whiplash Causes

According to West Virginia law, drivers, any passengers in the front seat, and any passengers in the back who are younger than 18 years old must wear seat belts. seat belts are designed to help hold the body in place in the event of an accident. However, seat belts can't hold the head still. Rear end collisions are the most frequent causes of whiplash injuries. Additional causes of whiplash include: 
  • Ÿ Other motor vehicle accidents;
  • Ÿ Sports injuries;
  • Ÿ Assault; and
  • Ÿ A blow to the head from a fallen object. 

Whiplash Symptoms

Whiplash symptoms usually don't appear immediately after an accident. The symptoms usually start to occur about 24 hours later. Whiplash symptoms may include: 
  • Ÿ Headaches;
  • Ÿ Dizziness;
  • Ÿ Stiff neck;
  • Ÿ Irritability;
  • Ÿ Difficulty in sleeping; and
  • Ÿ Blurred vision. 

Serious Whiplash symptoms include:
 
  • Ÿ Weakness and tingling in the arms;
  • Ÿ Difficulty in moving the head;
  • Ÿ Severe neck pain;
  • Ÿ Pain in the shoulders and arms;
  • Ÿ Difficulties with urination;
  • Ÿ Difficulties with bowel movements; and
  • Ÿ Symptoms disappearing and then reoccurring. 

Whiplash symptoms can reoccur and in some cases, may last for years. This is especially true if they are not properly treated following the initial accident. That's why it is always important to have a full medical evaluation following a car accident. Many injuries, whiplash included, may not present symptoms right away but carry serious consequences if left untreated.

After your injuries have been diagnosed by a medical professional and you begin treatment, you can reach out to a Clarksburg personal injury lawyer who can explain your legal options for recovering compensation related to your accident.

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