Written on Nov 15, 2023 12:26:32 PM
Common Neck Injuries from Car Accidents + What To Do
Despite advancements in vehicle safety, car accidents continue to be a leading cause of injuries, particularly neck injuries. These injuries can range from mild discomfort to severe, life-altering conditions.
It is crucial to understand these common injuries, their symptoms, and the necessary actions to take after an accident to ensure both your health and your legal rights are protected. Learn more about the common neck injuries from car accidents and what to do after you're injured in a car accident.
Most Common Types of Neck Injuries from Car Accidents
Some of the most common neck injuries from car accidents in Florida include:
- Whiplash Injury: This is by far the most common neck injury in car accidents. Whiplash occurs when the head snaps forward and backward quickly and violently, causing the muscles and ligaments in the neck to extend beyond their typical range of motion.
- Ruptured or Herniated Disc Injuries: The impact of a car accident can cause the discs that cushion the bones in the neck to rupture or herniate, leading to pain, numbness, and weakness in the neck and arms.
- Soft Tissue Damage: A car accident can cause damage to the soft tissues in the neck, including muscles, tendons, and ligaments. This can cause pain, stiffness, and limited range of motion.
- Neck Sprain: This occurs when the ligaments in the neck are stretched or torn.
- Neck Strain: Also known as a pulled muscle, a neck strain happens when the muscles in the neck are stretched too far or torn.
- Cervical Radiculopathy: This condition results from a damaged or inflamed nerve in the neck, manifesting as pain, numbness, or a tingling sensation that can extend into the shoulders and arms.
- Cervical Fracture: Also known as a broken neck, this is a severe injury that can lead to paralysis or even death. It's less common but can occur in high-speed collisions.
In more severe car accidents, you may also suffer from neck fractures. You may also experience chronic neck pain or chronic pain in your back after a car accident. The sooner you can seek medical treatment, the better.
Other Common Injuries After a Car Accident
- Spinal Cord Injury: In the most severe car accidents, the impact can cause damage to the spinal cord. Spinal cord injuries involve partial or complete paralysis and other serious complications.
- Traumatic Brain Injury: Car accidents can also result in head injuries, including concussions and traumatic brain injuries, which can cause long-term cognitive and physical impairments.
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: While not a physical injury, many drivers suffer from anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder after a car accident.
Broken bones and lacerations are also common injuries in many car accidents.
Common Neck Injury Symptoms
Symptoms of neck injuries can vary depending on the severity and type of injury but may include:
- Neck pain, stiffness, or tenderness
- Headaches or migraines
- Pain, numbness, or tingling in the arms, shoulders, or back
- Muscle spasms in the neck
- Limited range of motion in the neck
- Dizziness or vertigo
- Blurred vision or difficulty focusing
It's crucial to seek medical attention after a car accident, even if you don't immediately feel injured. Symptoms of neck injuries may not show up until days or weeks after the accident, and delaying treatment can worsen your condition.
When to See a Doctor After a Florida Car Accident
You should seek medical attention immediately after a car accident, regardless of whether you think you've been injured. In Florida, the law requires you to see a doctor within 14 days of your car accident if you want to use your Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance coverage. If you fail to meet this deadline, you might lose your right to compensation from your PIP coverage.
Even if you don't notice any immediate symptoms, some injuries — such as whiplash or a traumatic brain injury — may not become apparent until days or even weeks after the accident. A doctor can assess for hidden injuries and provide necessary treatment, reducing the risk of long-term health complications. They can also provide you with a crucial piece of evidence: medical documentation of your injuries, which can play a significant role if you decide to seek compensation for your injuries.
Treatment & Recovery Options for Neck Injuries
The treatment and recovery process for neck injuries from car accidents may vary significantly depending on the severity and type of injury. Some common treatment options include:
- Pain medication to manage immediate discomfort
- Physical therapy to improve strength, flexibility, and range of motion in the neck
- Chiropractic care to realign the spine and alleviate pain and stiffness
- Injections to reduce inflammation and pain
- Surgery in severe cases where other treatments have not been successful
It's crucial to follow your doctor's treatment plan and attend all necessary appointments to ensure the best possible outcome for your recovery.
When to Contact a Florida Car Accident Lawyer
If you've suffered a neck injury in a car accident, it's essential to seek legal representation from an experienced Florida car accident lawyer. An auto accident attorney. can help you navigate the complicated legal process and ensure your rights are protected.
If another driver's negligence caused your injury, you may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. You should contact a lawyer after seeking medical attention.
Florida's Statute of Limitations for Car Accident Injuries
In Florida, the law imposes a strict deadline known as a statute of limitations on filing a lawsuit in the state's civil court system after a car accident. You have four years from the date of the accident. Missing this window may result in your case being dismissed and you being unable to seek compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages.
Are You Experiencing Neck Pain After a Hernando County Car Accident?
At Lowman Law Firm, we work with car accident victims to get the compensation they deserve for their medical bills. If you have any whiplash injuries or other neck injuries caused by a car accident, contact us today. Our hometown team of Hernando County car accident attorneys can help you with your neck injury claims.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the most common neck injury in a car accident?
The most common neck injury in a car accident is whiplash, which occurs when the head snaps forward and backward suddenly. This can cause damage to the muscles, ligaments, and nerves in the neck.
How long do I have to see a doctor after a Florida car accident?
Under Florida law, you must see a doctor within 14 days of your car accident if you want to use your PIP insurance coverage.
Do I need a lawyer for a neck injury from a car accident in Florida?
It's always best to consult with an experienced Florida car accident lawyer after suffering a neck injury in a car accident. They can help you navigate the legal process and ensure your rights are protected, especially if the injury was caused by another driver's negligence.
What damages can I recover for a neck injury from a car accident in Florida?
If another driver's negligence caused your neck injury, you may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. A Hernando county auto accident lawyer can help you determine the types of damages you may be eligible for based on your specific case.
What are the symptoms of a neck injury from a car accident?
The symptoms of a neck injury from a car accident can vary depending on the severity and type of injury, but may include neck pain, stiffness, headaches, numbness or tingling in the arms, dizziness, and limited range of motion in the neck. It's crucial to seek medical attention after an accident to diagnose any potential injuries.
How long should neck pain last after car accident?
Neck pain after a car accident can last anywhere from a few days to several weeks or even months, depending on the severity of the injury. It's essential to follow your doctor's treatment plan and attend any necessary follow-up appointments for proper healing and recovery.