What is a Whiplash Injury?

Whiplash is a term for one of the most common types of neck injuries. It is the result of a sudden impact where the body is jerked forward, and the neck and head are snapped backward. Often this means that muscles, ligaments, and tendons in the neck are stretched further than normal, leading to strain or tearing. In more severe cases, there can be damage to the brain caused by the sudden motion of the skull. Minor brain damage can happen even when there is not a direct impact to the head.

What are the consequences of whiplash?

The consequences of whiplash range from minor neck pain to serious neurological problems. The symptoms that someone experiences depend on several factors.

  • Severity of the incident. A small increase in force can lead to a significant difference in injuries.
  • Age of the person. Older people with weaker bones and muscles are more susceptible to this injury.
  • Pre-existing conditions. Neck and back problems will be exacerbated by this injury.
  • Previous whiplash incident. If the injured party is healing from a previous incident, another injury will make things worse.

Minor symptoms of whiplash include neck pain, stiffness in the neck and shoulders and headaches. These symptoms will generally resolve themselves within three months. However, a more serious incident can lead to chronic neck and back pain. If there has been a brain injury, other chronic symptoms may be seen. These symptoms may not happen immediately but can develop over time after the initial incident.

  • Memory loss
  • Blurred vision
  • Tinnitus
  • Depression
  • Irritability or other mood changes

Because of the possibility of serious medical consequences, it is essential to be evaluated by a medical professional soon after any whiplash incident. Having a medical report about these injuries is also important when consulting with a Round Rock whiplash lawyer.

What causes whiplash?

Many different kinds of trauma can lead to whiplash. Whiplash is associated with certain sports injuries, like in football when someone is tackled from behind. The condition is sometimes found in cases of assault or abuse. However, the most common cause of whiplash is automobile accidents, especially when a driver is rear-ended. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, whiplash is the most frequently reported automobile injury, and minor neck injury is reported in two-thirds of bodily injury cases involving auto accidents.

Whiplash and the Law

The most common cause of whiplash is being struck from behind in an auto accident. This is often the result of general negligence, distracted driving, speeding or driving under the influence. If you have suffered whiplash in the Round Rock area, you should consult a Round Rock whiplash lawyer who can help you receive compensation for your injuries. Whiplash can leave you with longstanding medical issues and make employment difficult. The Elissa I. Henry Law Firm has helped many clients receive successful outcomes after whiplash injuries. They specialize in providing affordable legal services that are accessible to all people. The legal professionals at the Elissa I. Henry Law Firm can assess your case and help you move forward on the road to recovery.