As a leading law firm that specialises in personal injury, at Accident Advice Helpline we have helped many people recover damages after suffering from whiplash injuries, usually after a traffic accident. Whiplash is a very common injury following traffic accidents but many misnomers and myths tend to circulate around this painful condition, among which is a tendency for people to assume that it is either not very serious or that people with whiplash injuries are simply making it up. However, this is rarely the case and whiplash can be extremely serious and is also very common for specific reasons.
What is whiplash?
Whiplash is a broad term that describes various injuries that can happen to a person’s spine through sudden acceleration and deceleration. This is why it is so common during a road traffic accident, because when a car stops suddenly the head and neck continue forward, resulting in torn and stretched ligaments and hyperextension of the vertebrae. Whiplash is very rarely life threatening, however, it can vary in its severity with some suffers experiencing just a few days of soreness while others having permanent and chronic pain in their head and neck. In most instances, whiplash injuries are treatable with painkillers and analgesics but it can result in many weeks and months of pain and discomfort, which can mean the sufferer is unable to work and do the things they normally enjoy.
What causes whiplash injuries?
The most common cause of whiplash injuries is road traffic collisions. This is because of the way a seatbelt restrains a person in a motor vehicle. While the chest and torso are kept still during sudden deceleration following a traffic accident, the head and neck continue going forward, which stretches the spine and causes whiplash injuries. This is why whiplash is the most common injury suffered by people involved in motor accidents. In addition, symptoms of whiplash are not always apparent straight away, with some people developing pain in their neck days or sometimes weeks after the accident.
Because whiplash injuries can be so painful and debilitating, with sufferers often having to take weeks and even months off work, it is only right that people who suffer whiplash following a traffic accident that wasn’t their fault are compensated for the pain, suffering and any financial costs caused by the injury, which is where Accident Advice Helpline can help.