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Symptoms of whiplash after a car accident

Whiplash is a common injury that occurs in rear-end accidents. It’s caused by your neck’s rapid and forceful back-and-forth movement when another vehicle strikes yours. 

Symptoms of whiplash don’t always show up right away. Because of this, you may think you are fine right after an accident. Unfortunately, symptoms can appear several days or weeks later. Learn the signs and symptoms of whiplash here. 

Common symptoms of whiplash

Usually, symptoms of whiplash appear within a few days or weeks of your accident. They include:

  • Stiffness and pain in the neck
  • Reduced range of motion in the neck
  • Pain when moving the neck
  • Headaches (usually at the base of your skull)
  • Fatigue
  • Numbness or tingling in the arms
  • Dizziness
  • Tenderness and pain in the arms, upper back and shoulders

Some people also experience irritability, sleep disturbances, ringing in the ears, depression, memory issues, problems concentrating and blurred vision. 

Should you see a doctor?

It is smart to contact your medical provider if you notice any of the symptoms mentioned above after being involved in a car accident. If you wait, the condition could worsen and cause more severe issues.

Also, going to the doctor right away after an accident is recommended if you plan to pursue a claim against the at-fault party. This provides documentation of what happened, your injuries and the potential long-term impact of your injuries caused by the accident. 

Don’t wait to seek medical treatment

Whiplash can cause chronic pain for those who do not seek treatment after an accident. Also, failure to be evaluated by a doctor may result in the at-fault party’s insurance company denying your request for compensation for the accident and your injuries.