Car accidents can result in serious injuries even if the damage to the vehicle is minimal. Since every person reacts differently, some injuries may take time to present themselves. It may take days or weeks before any of their symptoms show up.
So, you need to relax and take your time. Take it easy and listen to your body. After several hours or days, you can be sure you are fine. Otherwise, you should see a doctor if you start feeling worse. One of the conditions that you may realize you have is whiplash.
What Is Whiplash?
Whiplash, or neck strain, is an injury that affects the soft tissue structures of the neck. It is a sprain to the ligaments or a straining of the tendons in the neck. It usually results from the forceful back-and-forth neck motion after a car collision. It causes it to extend or flex rapidly. Take your time and monitor your body to be sure you have whiplash.
Why Is It Delayed?
Neck strains take time before they start to show symptoms. It means it will prolong your recovery from the accident. Also, since you are unaware of a pending condition, you may engage in activities that may worsen it. Here are some reasons why whiplash may be delayed.
Adrenaline is one of the main reasons why whiplash may not show up immediately. It is a hormone from the adrenal glands that your body produces when you have fear or stress. It is the body’s fight or flight response and helps you respond to a threat.
It strengthens your body and allows you to continue as if it is business as usual. It does this by increasing your body’s intake of oxygen. It dilates your blood vessels and boosts your circulation.
Adrenaline also reduces your sensations of pain and numbs it. Thus, you will only start to feel the symptoms of the impact once your body relaxes and its levels decrease.
After the accident, many people do not recognize the symptoms of neck strain as something serious. They may write them off as short-term effects of the accident that will resolve themselves or think they are symptoms of stress and need to relax.
However, the symptoms only continue to become worse. Things may be worse by the time you resolve to see a doctor. Hence, do not dismiss any symptoms you may have after a collision.
Sometimes, it takes a while before your immune system kicks in and triggers inflammation in the injured area. Inflammation triggers pain, the most effective alarm that something is wrong with your body. The symptoms may take hours, days, or weeks.
During this time, you may engage in activities that cause the inflammation and pain to worsen. Thus, you should take good care of yourself in the days or weeks after a car accident. If you notice any inflammation or neck pain, seek medical attention immediately.
Due to the delay in whiplash pain, victims of car accidents should stay off social media. Otherwise, any photos you post of you partying or having fun with friends may work against you. You may have difficulty proving that your whiplash injury resulted from the accident. Thus, you may forego your compensation and must pay your medical bills.
For more information on whiplash, visit Frame Chiropractic & Acupuncture at our Toledo, Ohio office. Call (419) 573-0077 to schedule an appointment today.