Whiplash Injuries from Car Accidents

Whiplash is a soft tissue neck injury caused by forceful and sudden jerking of the neck, similar to the motion of a cracking whip. This motion can harm neck muscles, nerves, ligaments, and tissues, as well as bones in the spine and disks between the bones. Whiplash is a common injury after a car accident.  According to the Virtual Medical Centre, approximately 120,000 whiplash injuries occur in the U.S. each year. Some accidents that may cause whiplash are:

Symptoms

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke lists down the symptoms of whiplash as follows:

Even in relatively minor car accidents, there have been instances when persons who incurs whiplash injuries experience severe pain and cannot work for a substantial period. Thus, it is crucial that a person with such injuries contacts a lawyer as soon as he or she is able.

Complications of Whiplash Injuries

Although it might entail only mild discomfort in the neck, whiplash should not be underestimated. The effects of whiplash may not appear until after several days and may result in complications. There are patients who suffer chronic shoulder and neck pain, as well as develop cognitive, somatic, or psychological conditions because of whiplash injuries.  Whiplash injuries may be classified as follows:

  • Grade 0: No physical signs of injury or patient complaints
  • Grade 1: No physical signs, but there is neck pain
  • Grade 2: Neck pain and signs of musculoskeletal injury
  • Grade 3: Neck pain and signs of neurological impairment

In some instances, some people with whiplash injuries continue to have pain for several months or years after the injury occurred. According to the Mayo Clinic, chronic pain is more likely if your first symptoms were intensely painful, started rapidly, and included severe neck pain, headaches, or pain that spread to the arms. The following are factors that increase the risk of complications:

  • Previous whiplash injury
  • Older age
  • Existing low back or neck pain

Treatment

If you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above after a car accident, visit your doctor right away. Whiplash may be treated with pain medications, anti-inflammatory drugs, antidepressants, muscle relaxants, and a cervical collar. Depending on the prognosis, the doctor may also prescribe motion exercises, physical therapy, and cervical traction.

How Michigan Car Accident Lawyer Can Help You

A whiplash injury may affect you for several years or may have life-changing consequences. Victims may find themselves incurring expensive medical bills while being unable to work for an extended period of time. If you sustained a whiplash injury after an accident, some of the damages you may be entitled to include:

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering

 Most likely, you will deal with insurance companies to recover compensation or damages. Michigan requires car owners to be covered by No-Fault Insurance. One of the components of no-fault insurance is the Personal Injury Protection (PIP), which means that you can file a claim for all reasonably necessary medical expenses if you are hurt in a car accident.  Conversely, if you are the one responsible for a car accident and the other party sustained whiplash injuries, you may be covered by the Residual Liability Insurance, another component of the No-Fault Insurance. This means that you are protected from being sued as a result of an auto accident. However, if the other party sustains major injuries, you may be held personally liable.

In either case, it is best to contact a highly-rated attorney right away. Filing a claim against your insurance company or the other party may be a long, arduous process. Your attorney can help alleviate the anxiety by dealing with the insurance companies themselves and getting the best deal for you at the end of the day. Moreover, contacting a personal injury attorney as soon as you are able ensures that your rights are protected from the very beginning.  For top-rated car accident lawyers in Michigan, contact the Clark Law Office today. Our high-quality work, dedication, and years of experience will make sure that you get the best results for your case. Contact us at (517) 347-6900 or fill out our form to get a free consultation.