Orange County Whiplash Injury Lawyer
Whiplash injuries cause intense pain and debilitation. They can make it impossible to rest comfortably, interfere with work- and family activities, and make your life miserable. No one should suffer the agony of whiplash without compensation.
If you or a loved one is injured in a whiplash accident, contact our office online or call 888-527-1267 to schedule your free consultation with an experienced Orange County car accident lawyer. Our law firm handles car accident cases on a contingency fee basis, which means we don’t get compensated if you don’t get compensated.
What Is a Whiplash Injury?
Whiplash is a broad description of neck injuries resulting from violent body movement rather than blunt force trauma.
When the body experiences sudden, forceful jerking motions, the head moves backward and forward with more pressure than the neck muscles can withstand. The neck stretches too far, resulting in severe compression of ligaments on each side of the vertebrae.
What Are Whiplash Injury Symptoms?
Whiplash damages soft tissue. Common injuries include pain, tenderness, stiffness, bruising, and inflammation of the neck and upper back muscle tissues. Whiplash injuries heal slowly, leaving the victim in intense pain and debilitating.
How Is Whiplash Diagnosed?
Doctors diagnose whiplash by asking the patient about the symptoms and causal events. In addition, physicians need to understand the severity of the symptoms, whether constant or intermittent and what worsens or improves them.
For instance, does certain activity exacerbate the symptoms? The physician will perform an examination. They will check your head, neck, and arms for the following:
- The range of motion in your neck and shoulders
- Degree of motion that causes pain
- Neck, shoulder, and back tenderness
- Limb reflexes
Imaging tests provide no evidence of whiplash, but your doctor will likely order some routine diagnostics to rule out other conditions. Possible imaging tests after a whiplash injury include the following:
- CT Scan
Doctors engage in goal-oriented treatment for whiplash. Therapy is aimed at the following results:
- Control pain
- Restore normal range of motion
- Get patients back to normal activities
Your doctor may recommend one or more of the following treatments to control pain:
- Heat therapy
- Ice therapy
- OTC medications
- Prescription painkillers
- Muscle relaxants
- Lidocaine injections
Exercises also help reduce pain, speed healing, and restore normal function. Doctors often recommend specific exercises to treat whiplash symptoms, including the following:
- Neck rotations
- Side-to-side head tilts
- The neck bends toward the chest
- Shoulder rolls
Many whiplash injuries also benefit from physical therapy. For example, a physical therapist helps with an exercise plan and performing therapeutic motions that enhance flexibility, increase strength, and speed up the healing process. Physical therapy for whiplash often includes transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS). TENS machines deliver a mild electric current to the skin. Practitioners believe it eases neck pain while improving muscle strength.
The length of physical therapy treatment varies based on the injury and person. For example, a young patient with minor whiplash may need only a few sessions; however, an elderly patient with severe whiplash often requires extended physical therapy. Foam collars provide another treatment option. They keep the neck still so it can better heal and reduce pain. They also help whiplash sufferers sleep. Without the collar, the natural neck bending while sleeping can cause pain and wake the person throughout the night.
Some studies indicate the collars should only be used sparingly or for long periods. As with a brace, the collar helps reduce pain in the short term but may result in muscle atrophy that interferes with recovery over time. Your doctor will advise on the use of foam collars.
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What To Do After a Whiplash Injury Accident?
Many types of accidents can result in whiplash. Whiplash is common in auto accidents because of the high level of force the body experiences. But whiplash can also occur from a fall and other trauma.
If you have been in an accident, you need to be thoroughly examined by a doctor. Whiplash symptoms may manifest slowly and worsen over time, so do not assume you are uninjured or that the pain will quickly subside. A medical exam determines what injuries you have sustained. Often, whiplash accompanies other serious injuries, such as broken bones and spinal cord damage.
Medical treatment also produces records that link the injury to the accident. For example, in court, the defense may assert that the whiplash was due to another cause. However, your exam documentation demonstrates that the whiplash resulted from the incident.
Also, be sure to report the incident. For example, if you are in a car crash, the police report provides evidence that the accident occurred and that you suffered the injury. The same applies if you fall at a store, though you would file a report with management. Take down the contact information for any witnesses and note any security cameras may have recorded the accident.
Getting Fair Compensation for Whiplash Injuries
Seeking medical treatment provides evidence proving that the incident occurred and the whiplash that resulted from it. In addition, it establishes the severity of the injury. Based on this, your doctor recommends treatments and therapies that alleviate the condition. Also, your medical exams show the pain level and medically recommended activity changes.
California law entitles personal injury victims to be economic and non-economic damages.
Possible whiplash economic damages include the following:
- Medical bills
- Diagnostic testing
- Physical therapy
- Occupational therapy
- Assistive devices
- Lost wages
- Lost salary
- Lost business income
Non-economic damages include the following:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of consortium
Courts award punitive damages in rare cases. However, to win punitive damages, you must show that the defendant acted recklessly or intentionally that disregarded the safety and rights of others.
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Contact Top Rated Orange County Whiplash Injuries Accident Lawyer Today
Nordean Law understands how to prove whiplash cases and extract large settlements from resistant insurance companies. In addition, its trial lawyers develop the evidence and arguments that compel juries to issue big verdicts. Contact Nordean Law for a free consultation.