Popping Out Of Alignment
Whiplash occurs most often because of rear-end collisions, the sort of collision you see when someone isn’t paying enough attention at a stoplight and winds up ramming the person in front of him or her. The headrests on car seats are designed to prevent whiplash, but it still happens with some frequency.
Symptoms usually show up within 24 hours, but as with a lot of other nervous system injuries the full extent of the injury may not be felt even a week later. The most common symptoms are the obvious ones:
- • Pain and stiffness in the neck
- • A headache that begins by traveling up the base of the spine
- • An inability to move the head
However, because the injury extends to the spinal cord, you may see additional symptoms, such as:
- • Dizziness
- • Blurred vision
- • Difficulty concentrating
- • Memory problems
Because of this danger to your spinal cord and because there’s a possibility that the pain will linger for years if it’s not treated correctly, it’s important to see a doctor right away.
Popping Things Back Into Place
Once you’ve seen your doctor and ruled out all the more serious alternatives, a chiropractor may be just what you need to treat your neck. Chiropractors are essentially physical therapists who focus on back pain and spinal injuries such as whiplash. Treatments include gently rubbing and stretching the affected area and providing lifestyle advice which can help speed recovery.
Unfortunately, chiropractors have a mixed reputation similar to whiplash itself. Their field is classified as an alternative medicine, which means there isn’t as much regulation as that which surrounds doctors and specialists, and that means you’re more likely to encounter a greedy chiropractor who is willing to say anything you want to hear so long as you keep coming back for more. This also means that chiropractors are more likely to be involved in health insurance scams like the ones surrounding Florida’s Personal Injury Protection coverage.
Because of the consistent attempts to use this coverage for fraudulent purposes, insurance companies pressured Florida legislature into passing antifraud amendments to the PIP law. This included a requirement to seek help within 14 days and the restriction of benefits to $2500 out of the $10,000 policy if the injury isn’t life-threatening or potentially crippling.
So what’s the upshot? If you legitimately have whiplash and you legitimately need to see a chiropractor to improve your recovery time, your insurance adjustor will most likely be suspicious of your claim from the very beginning. Claims adjustors are already under a lot of pressure from the company to limit awarded claims as much as possible, and so many of them will seize on any excuse to drag their heels and delay compensation for as long as possible.
If you find yourself in this situation, you should consider hiring a personal injury lawyer with the resources and the knowhow to take on the insurance companies. Often enough, just the appearance of a successful law firm is enough to spark a settlement, since the alternative is an expensive court trial which the insurance company won’t necessarily win.
So if you’re suffering from whiplash and you live in southwest Florida in the Sarasota area, you should contact All Injuries Law Firm for a free case review. We’ll do all we can to make sure you get the compensation you deserve.