If you have never suffered a neck injury, it is difficult to imagine just how debilitating it can be. You may even think of the comedy sketch character with their neck in a brace. In real life, however, a neck injury is far from a laughing matter. It is a very painful and debilitating experience and the long- term effects of a neck injury can last for months and even years. Sadly, some neck injuries are so serious that the victim never makes a complete recovery and they are left to cope with permanent disabilities. Whiplash, for example, is one of the most common reasons for making neck injury claims, and also one of the most commonly sustained injuries in a road traffic accident.
If you have suffered whiplash or injured your neck after a slip, trip or fall, then you could be left in pain, unable to work and with limited mobility whilst you recover. Accident Advice Helpline has over 16 years’ experience helping people with neck injury claims, and if you get in touch with us, we could help you to get the compensation you deserve.
How did you sustain a neck injury?
When you think about how you could develop a neck injury, the most common way would be in a car accident but neck injuries also happen when playing sports and at work. We have all heard of the term ‘whiplash’ – which describes an injury affecting the soft tissue of the neck and is suffered most often in road traffic collisions. The muscles, tendons and ligaments in the neck area are affected – they support the bones of the neck and allow movement. In the more serious types of neck injury, the bones of the neck (vertebrae) and the large nerve running down the centre of the spinal column (spinal cord) are also damaged.
A neck injury could be sustained after a slip, trip or fall when the neck or head is jarred or hits a hard surface, and because your neck is connected to your back, shoulders, head and arms, these parts of the body can often be affected by a neck injury, which can cause symptoms including:
- Vision problems
- Limited mobility in the neck
- Pain and stiffness in the neck and shoulders
These symptoms generally get better with time, and most people will recover from whiplash within a few weeks. However, if you have suffered a more serious injury then you may experience pain and other symptoms which last for months, and you may need medical treatment. The symptoms of a neck injury can be very varied. If only the soft tissues are damaged, the victim will probably experience pain and a loss of movement. The symptoms are rarely confined to the neck alone. Many sufferers also get pins and needles in one or both arms, some numbness and headaches. In the more severe soft tissue neck injuries there may be dizziness as well. If the bones and spinal cord are damaged there could be permanent or temporary paralysis of the torso and limbs.
Who caused your accident?
Many people don’t bother to pursue neck injury claims as they’re not sure who was at fault for their accident. It could be that somebody else was liable for your accident, and if this is the case and you have sustained an injury as a result, you are entitled to make a claim for compensation. Another reason why many people miss out on compensation when it comes to neck injury claims is because they assume that they could lose their jobs. If you sustain a neck injury after a slip, trip or fall or even in a vehicle accident whilst driving for work, you’re entitled to claim compensation if your employer was negligent. If they could have done more to keep you safe then you could make a claim within three years of your accident, and if your claim is successful then their liability insurance will normally cover the compensation award, so nobody is left out of pocket.
Treatment for a neck injury
Treating a neck injury is a job for a specialist so it is vitally important that you seek medical attention straight after the injury occurs. A doctor will be able to thoroughly assess your injury and you may need x-rays or scans to assist with this. Treatment for very serious neck injuries will require extended stays in a hospital and perhaps in a specialist rehabilitation unit. If you have a milder, soft tissue injury, you may receive physiotherapy treatment. In general, milder injuries recover quicker if you can keep moving and complete the exercises that a physiotherapist recommends for you. Painkillers are very useful at this stage of recovery – provided it is safe for you to take them.
Contrary to what you may have heard, neck braces are generally not recommended for whiplash and minor neck injuries, as the neck heals faster if it is kept mobile, which is why it is so important to carry out the recommended exercises on a daily basis. If you have needed to take time off work after your accident, either for treatment or to recover from your injury, then you could find yourself in a position to claim compensation for loss of earnings. This could help you and your family out financially if you were injured due to somebody else’s negligence.
Claiming compensation with Accident Advice Helpline
Claiming for a neck injury is probably much easier than you think if the accident was not your own fault. Here at Accident Advice Helpline we have a team of skilled personal injury lawyers who are experts in handling claims for neck injuries. The cost of claiming for a neck injury need not be a concern as our personal injury lawyers work on a 100% no-win, no-fee basis. You have nothing to lose by calling us on 0800 689 0500 from a landline or 0333 500 0993 from a mobile and having an informal chat about your injury.