Georgia auto accidents cause all kinds of injuries, with whiplash being one of the most frequently seen by treating physicians and Georgia auto accident attorneys. Most of these accidents are caused by the negligence or fault of another driver, and it is up to you and your attorney to ensure that you receive fair compensation from the at-fault driver’s auto insurance policy. While many have heard of whiplash injuries, not everyone realizes that they are so common or so serious.
How Do Whiplash Injuries Occur in a Car Accident?
Whiplash is also known as Myofascial Pain Syndrome. It is caused in auto accidents by the sudden movement of the head, jerked forward and backward, straining the neck. This results in damaged muscles, stretched tendons, and wounded ligaments that are in the person’s neck. In many cases, the wounded person does not know that they have whiplash. The symptoms may not be present right away. They come on suddenly the next day, or gradually over the hours, days, and weeks ahead. This is just one of the reasons that we strongly encourage all auto accident victims to seek a full medical evaluation after an accident, even if they do not think they have serious injuries.
The most common type of Georgia auto accident that results in whiplash is the rear end collision. This is because when the rear driver strikes the front driver, the front driver’s head can be thrown forward by the impact, damaging the neck in the manner described above. Yet, there are other ways that whiplash can occur, in a variety of different kinds of auto accidents, with certain aspects of the incident making it more likely. For example, the height of the victim can make them more or less likely to experience such an injury. The position that the person is sitting in can also impact the likelihood of whiplash occurring. Finally, even gender seems to be a contributing factor to whiplash injuries.
How Height Can Increase the Chances of Whiplash
Most vehicles are designed to minimize the severity of injuries that will occur in an auto accident. However, some of these designs are only effective if implemented properly. An example of this is the need for taller people to adjust the headrest on the back of the vehicle’s seat. Of course, many people don’t think about this, and if someone is too tall for the head rest to stop their head as it slams back, pivoting backward on the neck, then this can make whiplash injuries more likely and more serious, with greater damage and long term pain and reduced range of motion.
How the Seating Position of the Auto Accident Victim Can Increase the Likelihood of Whiplash
Where you are sitting and how you are sitting can affect your likelihood of sustaining a whiplash injury as well as the severity of that injury. This is mostly seen in the difference between whiplash injuries in drivers and whiplash injuries in passengers. While the passenger may be relaxed, sitting back comfortably in their seat, the driver is usually sitting forward or more upright, with their head poised to improve their focus on the road and traffic around them. The driver is sitting in the perfect position to get the worst of the whiplash injuries in the vehicle. Passengers are less likely to get whiplash, and passengers who are in the back seat are the least likely to sustain such an injury.
How Gender Can Increase the Likelihood of Whiplash
Perhaps the most surprising factor that can increase the likelihood of a whiplash injury is the auto accident victim’s gender. Yet, it has been shown that female drivers and passengers can be more than twice as likely to sustain this kind of injury. While it is difficult to establish exactly why this is so, some medical experts and auto accident reconstructionists suspect that it may be related to the fact that males frequently have stronger neck muscles than females.
Contact a Georgia Auto Accident Attorney for Your Whiplash Claim
Any time someone is injured in a Georgia auto accident, that individual can benefit from the guidance and representation of a Georgia auto accident attorney. Many people think that they only need a lawyer if they are going to court, or that hiring a lawyer means that they will go to court. The reality is that an attorney can help with every step, from negotiation with the insurance company, and up to the trial phase if necessary, though the vast majority of auto accident claims never go to trial.
The most important reason to have an attorney in your corner is that he insurance claims adjuster will want to settle your case for the least amount possible, and they may not take your whiplash injury very seriously at all. Yet, in many situations, simply hiring a lawyer lets the insurance company know that you are taking it seriously, and that you do have the legal resource to pursue the compensation you are owed. Contact a determined car accident lawyer in Douglasville at the Law Offices of John B. Jackson & Associates for a free consultation.