Baltimore Whiplash Injury Attorneys

Whiplash injuries are commonly associated with car accidents.  Whiplash is often underappreciated as a relatively minor injury, but anyone suffering from whiplash knows that this could not be further from the truth.  If you or a loved one suffered whiplash in a car accident – even a low-speed collision – contact a lawyer to discuss filing a personal injury lawsuit and seeking compensation for your injuries.

Rice, Murtha & Psoras ’s Baltimore whiplash injury attorneys represent victims of whiplash and other car accident injuries, and we fight to get them compensation for those injuries.  You may be entitled to collect financial compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering damages.  Talk to one of our attorneys today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about your options for claiming damages for whiplash.  Our number is (410) 694-7291.

Causes of Whiplash in Baltimore Car Accidents

Car accidents are the most common cause of whiplash.  Most people have a basic understanding that whiplash is an injury to the neck caused by your head “whipping” back and forth suddenly.  This injury is actually a collection of injuries in the neck including strains, sprains, and other damage to the muscles, tendons, cartilage, and other soft tissue in your neck.

In most whiplash injuries, the neck first bends very far in one direction.  This typically takes it past your normal range of motion.  After that, the neck snaps back into its normal position, and this may actually be when the serious parts of the injury occur.

Car accidents typically cause these kinds of injuries when you suddenly stop or are suddenly pushed by another car.  Your seatbelt works to keep your body securely in your seat, but your head is often loose so you can look around while driving.  Your headrest helps prevent your head from bending back too far, but it, unfortunately, does not stop your head from moving forward.  In many rear-end accidents and crashes that suddenly stop your car, your head continues to travel forward while the seatbelt stops your body, causing your head to whip forward and for whiplash injuries to occur.

What is Whiplash?

Whiplash is an injury to the neck caused by sudden, rapid back-and-forth movements of the neck or head. Whiplash is most commonly suffered in rear-end traffic accidents, where the head drives forward by impact and then snaps back as seat belts or airbags restrain the body, forcing the neck through a sharp forward-backward cycle, much like the action of a bullwhip—hence the name.

Whiplash symptoms generally develop soon after the accident that caused the injuries. These symptoms include:

  • Neck stiffness and pain
  • Restricted range of neck or head motion
  • Headaches
  • Pain in the shoulders, upper back, or arms, as well as tingling or numbness in the arms
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness

Symptoms of more severe whiplash may include:

  • Blurred vision
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Irritability
  • Problems with concentration and memory
  • Depression

While whiplash injuries are common, they usually do not last long. the majority of whiplash victims recover fully in a matter of a few weeks, or, less often, months. Still, a small minority suffer from whiplash symptoms for longer periods, including months or years after the injury. Only about 3 to 5 percent of people who suffer whiplash still suffer symptoms sufficient to keep them on disability after one year.

Causes of Whiplash in Other Accidents

Although car accidents are the most common cause of whiplash, you can suffer from whiplash in other accidents and incidents.  Other vehicle accidents, such as motorcycle accidents and bike accidents, can also cause whiplash by some of the same methods.  Other accidents involving slip and falls or falls from high places could also result in whiplash.  If you strike another object on the way down, your body might stop faster than your head, and you could suffer whiplash if your neck is hyperextended during the fall.

As long as your whiplash injury was caused by someone else’s negligence or bad actions, you might be able to sue for compensation for your injuries.  Call our Baltimore whiplash injury lawyers today if you received whiplash injuries from another type of accident.

How Do You Treat Whiplash?

In most Baltimore whiplash cases, the goal is to manage pain while the body heals. the most common treatments for whiplash include:

  • Rest. Doctors generally recommend a lot of rest for the first day after the injury, but then call for more activity.
  • Applying ice or heat. Ice reduces inflammation while heat helps muscles relax. Doctors commonly recommend both treatments multiple times per day for short periods.
  • Over-the-counter painkillers. For minor whiplash injuries, acetaminophen and ibuprofen generally are sufficient.
  • Prescription pain medications and muscle relaxers. For more severe cases, stronger painkillers may be appropriate.
  • Injected painkillers. Injections of lidocaine are often used to reduce pain to a level where physical therapy is possible, typically in more severe cases.

More severe cases of whiplash can require significant amounts of prescription painkillers, pain treatment, and physical therapy for prolonged periods. Missed time at work often results from such cases. You also may find yourself unable to participate in many common family activities, such as cooking, gardening, mowing the lawn, playing with children, and other activities most people take for granted.

Damages for Whiplash Injuries

If you received your whiplash injury in a car accident in Baltimore, your first reaction might be to file your claim through insurance.  Although many car accident cases can be filed through insurance and could lead to reasonable compensation, filing your case in court may open you to higher damages that compensate your whiplash more appropriately.

Damages for an injury typically involve the cost of medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.  In a car accident, you would also likely claim compensation for the damage to your vehicle, but the compensation for your injuries is far more important.  the medical bills for whiplash may include ongoing care, so these damages are especially important in a whiplash case.  Moreover, serious pain and reduced motion in your neck can affect any job – even a desk job – which might require you to miss work.  This makes lost wage damages likely in whiplash cases as well. Our Baltimore whiplash injury attorneys can help you.

Damages for pain and suffering are interesting in whiplash cases.  While the injury not as bad as severe spinal cord damage or broken bones in the neck, whiplash can still cause prolonged pain and discomfort.  In fact, many people suffering from whiplash never fully recover and face at least minor symptoms for the rest of their life.  Because of this, pain and suffering damages may be substantial for whiplash injuries.

In a lawsuit, you can claim these damages in full.  Unfortunately, filing with an insurance company for auto insurance coverage usually does not pay 100% of these damages.  That means your medical damages and lost wages might not be paid in full, plus damages for pain and suffering are usually unavailable in an insurance claim.  Moreover, if you are offered a settlement for your pain, this settlement may be far lower than the damages you would be entitled to claim in court.

It is vital to talk to an attorney about your case before accepting any damages from the at-fault party.  it is hard to know what your claim might be worth without discussing it with an experienced Baltimore personal injury lawyer, especially since whiplash injuries can vary greatly from case to case.  Always talk to a lawyer before filing any insurance claims or accepting any payments for your injuries as these may qualify as a settlement and block your case from going to court.

Call Our Baltimore Whiplash Lawyers for a Free Legal Consultation

If you suffered whiplash in a car accident or any other accident in Baltimore or the surrounding areas, contact Rice, Murtha & Psoras today.  Our Maryland personal injury lawyers offer free legal consultations to discuss your options and help you understand what your claim might be worth.  Call our Baltimore whiplash injury lawyers today at (410) 694-7291 to set up your free legal consultation.