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What Are the Long-Term Effects of Whiplash From a Car Accident

on  Car Accidents

Long-term effects of whiplash can last for years and result in a lifetime of pain and suffering. It is important for car accident victims to understand that not everyone recovers from whiplash easily. Before you accept a quick settlement with the insurance company, you need to make sure you aren’t going to suffer any long-term effects. 

If you do suffer from chronic or long-term whiplash, you need to speak to an experienced Florida car accident lawyer at Prosper Shaked Accident Injury Attorneys, PA. Our lawyers will examine your case and help you file a personal injury claim against the other driver after you’ve exhausted your PIP. 

Without a lawyer on your side, insurance adjusters may not pay you what you deserve. Insurance adjusters are notoriously skeptical of whiplash claims, especially chronic or long-term whiplash. They won’t want to pay you maximum compensation without strong evidence. Our law firm can fight for your rights after you’ve suffered whiplash and we’ll go up against insurers to get you the money you need and deserve. 

Long-Term Effects of Whiplash

Whiplash, often associated with car accidents, goes beyond just neck pain and limited mobility. Its long-term effects can extend to various physical and neurological symptoms, potentially affecting your overall quality of life. These effects may include:

  • Jaw pain
  • Neck pain
  • Persistent pain and stiffness in the shoulders, upper or lower back
  • Numbness, weakness, or pain in the arms and legs
  • Reduced range of motion in the cervical spine
  • Headaches that can escalate to migraines
  • Experiences of dizziness and blurred vision
  • Challenges with sleeping, leading to fatigue
  • Difficulties with memory and focus
  • Tinnitus, or ringing in the ears
  • Stomach aches
  • A range of non-painful neurological symptoms
  • Increased irritability, anxiety, and feelings of general ill health

Notably, the enduring nature of these symptoms can lead to significant mental and emotional distress. Research indicates that individuals with long-term whiplash effects are more prone to new-onset mental anguish and emotional distress, often stemming from the frustration of coping with a persistent and life-altering injury.

If you’re suffering from the long-term impacts of whiplash, especially in Florida, it’s important to understand your legal rights and options. Talk to an experienced car accident lawyer to explore your legal options and potential compensation for economic damages and pain and suffering caused by whiplash. Taking this step can be pivotal in ensuring you receive the support and compensation necessary for dealing with these extensive and often debilitating long-term effects of whiplash.

How Common is Chronic and Long-term Whiplash?

Chronic whiplash remains a significant concern for victims of automobile accidents. A revealing study in the medical journal Neurology highlighted the long-term impact of whiplash. 

Researchers discovered that nearly 8% of individuals suffering from whiplash were unable to return to their normal activity levels more than a year post-accident, primarily due to pain and stiffness.

Over seven years, these researchers tracked 4,124 auto accident victims. They found a notable incidence of enduring effects from whiplash, with the degree of impact varying based on the accident type and the initial injury’s severity.

In certain groups, the risk of developing chronic disability and handicap post-whiplash reached as high as 50%. This statistic underscores the potential severity of whiplash injuries.

Interestingly, the study also found that severe whiplash symptoms could be present in individuals whose X-rays showed no clear signs of injury. This aspect can make a diagnosis and subsequent insurance claims particularly challenging.

Further research indicates that individuals with severe whiplash are more likely to experience a range of symptoms, including headaches, dizziness, and concentration difficulties, which can persist for months or even years.

These findings emphasize the seriousness of whiplash as an injury. It’s not just a short-term inconvenience; it can lead to long-term disability and significant lifestyle changes.

Who Is At Risk for Long-Term Whiplash Effects?

While most whiplash injury victims will recover within weeks or months, some will not. Children, senior citizens, and anyone with a disability are more likely to suffer from long-term whiplash effects. In addition, anyone who suffered a severe whiplash injury may find it difficult to fully recover without long-term effects. 

Long-term effects from whiplash are more probable under certain conditions, including:

  • Involvement in a severe motor vehicle accident.
  • Delay in receiving medical attention after the incident.
  • Sustaining injuries that affect the neck’s ligaments, discs, or joints.
  • Experiencing a whiplash injury that involves cervical spine injury or spinal cord damage.
  • Having pre-existing neck or back conditions prior to the car crash.
  • Suffering another neck injury during the healing process.

If you suffered from serious reduced neck movement after your accident, you’re at a higher risk for developing long-term and chronic whiplash symptoms. One study found that up to 75% of those who suffered impaired movement in their neck were still disabled one year after the accident. 

Accident victims with severe whiplash are more likely to report increased sick days, indicating higher workplace absenteeism, a heightened need for psychological counseling or therapy, and greater dependence on prescription medications. This includes narcotics, which carry potential adverse health effects and a risk of addiction.

Why Do You Need a Lawyer After Suffering Long-Term Whiplash Effects?

Whiplash claims, especially with delayed symptoms, can be challenging to prove. Personal injury lawyers are adept at navigating these complexities and can help gather the necessary evidence to substantiate your claim. 

Your attorney will need to Lawyers obtain and organize medical records, expert opinions, and other crucial documentation to support your claim. This is an essential component of building your case and will help you win negotiations with the insurance company. 

Insurance companies will not want to pay you for long-term or chronic whiplash. Instead, they’ll likely delay or deny your claim. When this happens, you need a lawyer on your side who can fight for you. 

Collecting Compensation You Need After Suffering Long-term Whiplash

In a chronic whiplash injury case, the financial burdens can extend far beyond healthcare costs. Not only can medical expenses be substantial, but you may also face lost wages due to missed work and endure significant pain and suffering. These are all potential areas of compensation in a lawsuit.

Medical expenses resulting from your injury, including costs for diagnostic imaging, initial treatment, and continued care, can be fully covered by the damages awarded in a personal injury lawsuit. This ensures that the financial impact of your medical needs is addressed.

Furthermore, many jobs require physical activities like turning your head or bending over, which might be restricted by a whiplash injury. If you’re forced to take leave or switch to lighter duties, impacting your earnings, you could be eligible to claim compensation for any lost or reduced income.

In addition to covering medical expenses and lost wages, you might also be entitled to significant compensation for your pain and suffering. The value of these damages can be substantial, reflecting the ongoing physical discomfort and mental anguish caused by whiplash. Even if it seems less severe compared to other injuries like traumatic brain injuries, the persistent nature of whiplash can lead to considerable physical and emotional distress, meriting substantial compensation.

Remember, pursuing a personal injury lawsuit for a whiplash injury can help alleviate the financial burdens after a car accident, providing you with the support you need to recover fully.

Contact Our Florida Whiplash Injury Lawyers

If you’re still suffering with the long-term effects of whiplash, you are not alone. At Prosper Shaked Accident Injury Attorneys, PA, our Florida whiplash lawyers can investigate your case and go over your legal options with you. We will walk you through the legal process and protect your rights throughout. Contact personal injury lawyer Prosper Shaked today at (305) 694-2676 for a free consultation on your case.