Car accidents are extremely rough on the human body. Some people walk away with only a few bruises on their bodies. Other people deal with broken bones or worse scenarios. One of the most frustrating injuries is whiplash. This ailment doesn’t occur right away at the accident for every patient. It can arise later on. Days, weeks or months might pass before you feel the real effects of this injury. Take a look at the details surrounding whiplash so that you can make the proper medial and legal decisions in your situation.
The Physiology of Whiplash
It’s a reality that whiplash injuries are still largely misunderstood. Doctors believe that whiplash occurs when ligaments, bones, nerves or blood vessels are negatively affected by a violent, neck movement. The spine is essentially whipped back and forth without any support from your muscles.
After an accident, you might have a stiff neck at first. Doctors suggest that one or more tissues have torn, which leads to inflammation. This swelling sensation presses against your adjacent tissues, which creates pain that’s difficult to pinpoint and treat.
When you’re in an auto accident, there are normally two parties involved. You may not be at fault. Your whiplash injury that arises after the accident may be covered by the offending driver’s insurance. Verification of your injury is typical in any medical or legal situation.
However, discovering whiplash in a person’s neck isn’t the same as documenting a broken bone. The injured tissues pictured in an MRI will actually appear healthy. It’s almost impossible to visually document a whiplash injury. Doctors, lawyers and insurance companies must use the patient’s symptoms as qualifying factors.
Working on Pain Management
Whiplash injuries are painful. The pain comes in waves that ebb and flow over time. Your doctor will probably prescribe some painkillers to alleviate most of the pain’s intensity. Simple stretches may also be prescribed, such as stretching out the neck in small movements.
Because whiplash arises at varying times after an accident, it’s important to see your doctor as soon as the symptoms arise. Your doctor’s appointments become evidence of your ailment, which helps you in any legal situation.
Going Through Physical Therapy
Depending on the extent of your injury, your doctor might order physical therapy. You’ll require some time off from school or work to participate in these appointments. Work with your lawyer to see if the offending party in the accident will cover your salary losses in this situation. Most therapy sessions are about an hour each with several visits every week. You should focus on improving your mobility and reducing the pain along your spine.
Understanding Persistent Pain
Most patients see improvements to their neck ailment after several months. A combination of medication and physical therapy are the keys to recovery. In some cases, however, pain persists for years after the incident. Patients must continue to document their plight so that insurance coverage can absorb the costs. The offending party may pay out a certain amount in damages to help your situation. This scenario is only possible, however, if your lawyer proves your need.
Returning to Work or School
Your doctor must clear you for work or school. In most cases, you need to take baby steps into your ordinary life. Your neck performs a lot of minute movements throughout the day. Taking it easy and resting more often than not are normally suggested. Return to every doctor’s appointment without fail. Your medical records are proof of your legal standing in any auto accident. Being fairly covered for your losses requires diligent care and constant proof through professional evaluations.
If you’re having any issues with your insurance company covering your whiplash injury, speak to your lawyer right away. You have rights when it comes to adequate, medical coverage. It may not be your insurance that’s supposed to cover the costs. Allow a legal professional to protect your rights as you focus on getting better.