Whiplash is one of the most common injuries suffered in car accidents and often occurs when the neck is jerked back and forth suddenly. Common symptoms of whiplash include neck pain and stiffness, dizziness, fatigue and tingling in the arms. However, these symptoms might not become obvious until days after the accident. That’s why many cases of whiplash don’t get treated soon enough. Car accident lawyers share some important information about whiplash injuries below.
Steps to Take After Suffering Whiplash
If you recall your neck getting jerked back and forth during the car accident, you may have suffered whiplash. However, because of all the adrenaline you have from the accident, you may not feel any pain at all. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take the injury seriously. When the adrenaline wears off, you may experience even worse pain.
The best thing you can do is get examined by a doctor as soon as possible. Even if you don’t feel pain right now, you never know if you will experience it later. It’s better to be safe than sorry. A doctor will examine the extent of your injury and then recommend the appropriate treatment.
How a Doctor Can Help
The type of treatment your doctor recommends will depend on the severity of the whiplash and how extreme your pain is. For example, if the injury is pretty minor, your doctor may just recommend avoiding strenuous activities for a while and doing stretching and strengthening exercises at home. However, if the whiplash was more severe, physical therapy or chiropractic treatments may be necessary. Your doctor may also have you wear a neck brace and prescribe pain medication to alleviate some of the discomfort.
Treating Whiplash at Home
In addition to medical treatments, there are ways to take care of your whiplash at home. Here are some self-care tips your doctor may suggest:
- Use Ice: Your neck may experience a lot of swelling for the first day after the accident. Applying an ice pack to your neck several times that day can reduce a lot of that swelling and help you feel better.
- Take It Easy: To help your injury heal faster, it’s important to get plenty of rest. Make sure to get at least eight hours of sleep every night and avoid doing strenuous physical activities.
- Pay Attention to Your Posture: When you have a whiplash injury, it’s easy to slouch to try to reduce your pain. However, bad posture can make your injury worse over time. It’s important to always sit up straight with your shoulders pulled back.
Getting Compensation and Treatment for Whiplash
If you suffered a whiplash in a car accident that was another driver’s fault, you may be entitled to compensation. It’s important to talk to a car accident lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your legal options, as well as a neck pain doctor Wheaton, MD offers to start your recovery.
Thank you to our friends and contributors at AmeriWell Clinics for their insight into chiropractic care and car accident injuries.