3 Steps to Take After Suffering Whiplash
Due to the sudden back-and-forth movement of your head and neck that occurs on impact, whiplash is a common injury associated with auto accidents. But whiplash injuries can occur after any accident that causes this abrupt movement, which damages the muscles and tendons in your neck.
It’s important to be aware of the signs and symptoms of whiplash since it can take days or weeks to develop. Your first step after any accident should be to seek immediate medical attention, even if your injuries aren’t apparent. From there, collecting medical records, accident reports, and witness statements is essential if you want to file an injury claim.
Identify Your Symptoms
Identify your symptoms and seek medical attention immediately, even if you don’t feel hurt. Seeking medical attention means that your injuries can be explored and documented, improving your chance of a successful claim. It’s helpful to know the most common symptoms of whiplash, like neck pain that intensifies with movement, neck stiffness, headaches, dizziness, and abnormal sensations such as burning or prickling (also known as paresthesias).
Furthermore, whiplash can cause more serious injuries. These include memory loss, impaired concentration, irritability, fatigue, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), and depression.
Diagnosis and Treatment
If you suspect that you’ve suffered whiplash, your doctor will examine the soft tissues in your neck. Doctors will utilize medical imaging tests such as a CT scan, MRI or X-ray to identify the source of your pain and rule out other injuries, like fractures.
To diagnose whiplash officially, your physician may ask that you perform tasks involving your neck, shoulders, and arms. This allows your doctor to see the range of motion in your neck and shoulders, as well as the strength of your reflexes and limbs.
When you think of whiplash injuries, you may think of the soft foam collar used to stabilize the neck during treatment. However, foam collars are not always used and can actually damage neck tissues. Doctors now treat whiplash with a combination of physical therapy, rest, and pain medications, when applicable.
Filing a Claim for Compensation
Once you’ve sought medical treatment and organized the details of your case, contact a lawyer. Your lawyer will file a claim on your behalf to seek compensation for your injuries. You may be able to secure compensation for medical bills and treatment, lost wages, and any future expenses or treatment.
However, you must list a monetary value so the court can compensate for your loss. And in Arizona, the statute of limitations for filing a claim is two years. So remember that you have two years from the date of your injury to file.
Personal Injury Attorney in Phoenix
The financial impact of car accidents can be devastating, especially those involving injuries. If you’ve sustained whiplash injuries from an accident due to another party’s negligence, you can secure compensation for your damages. After you’ve sought treatment, seek the help of a personal injury attorney as soon as possible.
Contact our personal injury lawyers at ELG Law at (623) 562-3838 for a free consultation. We are here to help you with your case every step of the way.