What to do if a loved one suffers whiplash in a car accident

Written on behalf of Abramson Smith Waldsmith LLP

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There are many types of motor vehicle accident injuries, all of which can turn a person’s life upside down.

Whiplash is a common injury, as this occurs when one vehicle strikes another from behind. If this happens, anyone in the lead vehicle could suffer whiplash.

If a loved one has recently suffered this type of car accident injury, it’s imperative that you step in to help him or her receive the best treatment available.

First things first, make sure your loved one is receiving treatment from a qualified medical team. Even if the person does not want to go to the hospital, this is something you should strongly suggest. Whiplash is not an injury that is easy to treat at home. Furthermore, if left untreated, it can cause a variety of long term issues, such as chronic headaches and neck pain.

Some of the best pain management strategies for whiplash include:

  • Rest. It’s important to receive the proper amount of rest after this injury, as taking on physical activity could worsen your symptoms.
  • Ice or heat. Let your medical team guide you as to whether ice or heat (or both) will provide the best relief of symptoms.
  • Medication. There are many types of medication that can help treat the pain associated with whiplash.

In some cases, physical therapy is required once you begin to recover. This can go a long way in helping you regain full range of motion in a reasonable period of time. Of course, your loved one should not be in a hurry to recover, as it can take many months of therapy to achieve the desired results.

As your loved one recovers from the accident, you can also step in to help this person better understand his or her legal rights. For example, it’s usually pretty clear who was at fault if the person’s vehicle was struck from behind. For this reason, it’s often easier to receive compensation from the negligent party.

There is a lot to consider when seeking compensation from an insurance company or filing a lawsuit. For this reason, don’t hesitate to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney who can review your case and act as your guide every step of the way.

Jeffrey R. Smith

Jeffrey R. Smith

Managing Partner

Robert B. Waldsmith

Robert J. Waldsmith

Partner, 1999

William B. Smith

William B. Smith

Partner, 1978

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