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The sudden impact of a rear-end collision is a frightening experience. A surprise to most drivers, these crashes often cause a condition called whiplash. Most Californians are familiar with this term, but not the specific medical implications. Whiplash is a painful injury that, if untreated, can cause chronic lifetime pain.
Thankfully, the most challenging part of treating whiplash is identifying when someone has it. Those involved in a car accident may not experience symptoms for days or weeks.
Common symptoms of whiplash
Whiplash is most common in car accidents but may result from a sports injury or physical abuse. Whiplash may even stem from shaken baby syndrome. Whiplash most often occurs when a sudden impact rapidly jerks a person’s head and neck back-and-forth, like a whip cracking. Most symptoms develop a few days after suffering the injury:
How doctors treat whiplash
People who suffer whiplash may not display symptoms for days. Anyone feeling the above symptoms a few days after a car accident, sports injury or other physical trauma may have whiplash. A doctor’s immediate intervention can prevent the onset of chronic pain.
Doctors treat most cases with pain medication and physical therapy, but some may require a chiropractor or neurologist. Doctors may treat severe cases with a neck brace, muscle relaxants or massage. Cases with muscle or ligament damage may require traction or even surgery.
Legal recourse for medical bills
Those suffering from whiplash have found legal success working with a local lawyer familiar with motor vehicle accidents. An attorney can assess an individual’s legal claim and help navigate dense insurance paperwork so victims can focus on healing and recovery.
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