According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the term “whiplash” was first used in 1928 to describe a neck injury resulting from a traffic accident. Almost 100 years later, whiplash is still the most common injury resulting from a car accident, and Ohio car accidents are no exception.
While many people report improvement as their injuries heal in the days and weeks following a car accident, whiplash is one injury that can get worse in the aftermath of an accident. In fact, symptoms may not show up for days, and in rare cases, even weeks following an accident. Whiplash may be difficult to see on an X-ray, CT scan, or MRI.
Whiplash Injuries Can Affect You For Months
Neck pain, shoulder pain, back pain, reduced range of motion, and headaches are some of the most common short-term symptoms of whiplash. The long-term effects of whiplash injuries that may develop in the following days and weeks include:
- Chronic pain and stiffness in the neck and shoulders
- Blurry vision
- Difficulty sleeping
- Jaw pain
- Memory problems
- Numbness, weakness, or sensory symptoms in the hands, arms, or legs
- Difficulty concentrating; permanent personality changes
- Ringing in the ears (constant or intermittent)
- Severe, chronic headaches
- Upper or lower back pain.
After an accident, you should always seek medical attention as soon as possible. Even though a whiplash injury may not cause immediate symptoms, both legal and medical experts recommend seeking medical attention immediately. Stiffness, loss of motion, and other serious side effects occur most often when untreated. Your record of getting medical care is also an important part of your personal injury claim.
Don’t Accept Less Compensation Than You Deserve
If you report a rear-end accident and whiplash injury to an at-fault driver’s insurance company, they may be quick to tell you that they accept liability and assure you that they will take care of you. Accepting a check for a few thousand dollars may resolve some immediate financial burdens and seem to be a straightforward resolution to a problem. However, an immediate solution can be a problem later. If you accept a quick settlement, you will not be able to request more compensation later for your additional medical expenses, time away from work, and pain and suffering.
Insurance companies want to pay you quickly for one reason: as part of the terms of accepting your payment, you will waive all rights to ask for more money later. Paying you quickly makes sense to them because it will save them a lot of money in the long run. You should never accept a personal injury settlement if you do not know how your injuries will heal and affect you months and years down the line. In the first few days and weeks following an accident, it is impossible to predict that your neck pain could be causing painful spasms and severe headaches a year later.
Get the Compensation You Deserve
Don’t take on the insurance company alone. At GBM Law, our Ohio car accident attorneys offer a free consultation to answer your questions and discuss your legal rights. Call us today at 614-222-4444. If we represent you, we will not charge any fees unless we recover money for you.