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Understanding accident-related whiplash injuries

No matter how safely you might drive or how closely you follow the rules of the road, there will always be negligent drivers who put you at risk. This means that you can receive an injury in a serious car accident through no fault of your own. One of the most common types of car accident injuries is whiplash. 

Whiplash is a soft tissue injury that occurs in the neck. Unfortunately, many people have negative associations with the word whiplash and believe that it is not a serious injury. In reality, it can be a debilitating injury that causes serious physical, emotional and financial pain. 

What causes whiplash? 

Whiplash can occur when your head violently whips backward and then forward again. You can suffer a whiplash injury in virtually any type of car accident. However, it is especially common in victims of rear-end collisions. 

This type of injury is not exclusive to car accidents, either. You can also suffer a whiplash injury from a fall or sporting accident. Even assaults can cause victims to suffer damage to the soft tissue in their neck. 

What are the symptoms of whiplash? 

It is important to pay careful attention to how you feel both immediately after an accident as well as in the following days. This is because the rush of adrenaline you got during your accident may make it difficult for your body to relax and really begin to feel some of the worrying symptoms of whiplash. These symptoms include: 

  • Aching and dull neck pain 
  • Back pain 
  • Stiffness and tightness in the neck 
  • Headaches 
  • Dizziness 
  • Problems with balancing 
  • Memory issues 

Some of these symptoms overlap with traumatic brain injury symptoms. Both whiplash and TBIs require prompt medical attention, so you should be sure to seek out proper treatment as soon as you notice any of these symptoms. Depending on your injuries, you might even require specialist care. 

Focusing on recovery 

A whiplash injury can make it difficult — if not impossible — to carry on with your daily life. Focusing on your recovery is essential to getting your life back, but it can feel like a monumental task. This is not a journey you have to take without any help, though. In North Carolina, it is possible to secure compensation through the proper legal channels, such as a personal injury lawsuit.