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How Long Do Whiplash Symptoms Last?

Many people who sustain a whiplash injury naturally want to know how long their symptoms will last.

Whiplash injuries usually occur in road traffic accidents when a stationary or slow moving car is hit from behind by another vehicle. The rear impact causes the head to suddenly move back and forth, damaging tendons and ligaments in the neck.

Common symptoms of a whiplash injury include pain, stiffness and loss of movement in the neck. After a car accident, whiplash symptoms can take up to 12 hours to develop.

How Long Does Whiplash Last?

The NHS say that, although whiplash symptoms may get worse for a few days after the injury occurs, the average recovery time is 32 days.

Whiplash usually gets better on its own or after some basic treatment. A recommended treatment for whiplash, as suggested by the NHS, is to do some gentle exercises to help keep your neck mobile.

Many people who have sustained a whiplash injury find that they get better without any lasting damage, but others find their symptoms last much longer than they thought.

The need for early treatment should therefore be identified as soon as possible after the onset of symptoms to expedite and maximise recovery. This can usually be provided as part of the whiplash compensation claim process.

Chronic Whiplash

An NHS study found that 12% of whiplash sufferers were suffering from chronic whiplash, a term used to describe whiplash symptoms that last for six months or longer.

The prolonged neck pain experienced by chronic whiplash sufferers can make it difficult for them to continue with normal day-to-day activities. They may find that they have problems at work or that they can’t carry on with the leisure activities they’ve always enjoyed.

Chronic whiplash can cause serious psychological problems too, such as anxiety or depression. This could be made worse by the current stigma attached to people who claim whiplash – and chronic whiplash sufferers could find that they are continuing to suffer from debilitating symptoms but are not being taken seriously by their peers, making them feel even more anxious or depressed.

Whiplash can be a serious condition with life-changing consequences. If you have suffered a whiplash injury, and would like to discuss making a whiplash compensation claim to help get your life back on track, seeking expert legal advice early on in the process can be crucial.

Slater and Gordon Lawyers are one of the UK’s leading personal injury law firms and have helped guide many whiplash sufferers to brighter outcomes. Most whiplash compensation claims are dealt with on a No Win, No Fee basis which means there is no financial risk to you whatsoever.

For a free consultation about claiming compensation for a whiplash injury, call us 24/7 on freephone 0800 916 9046 or contact us online and we’ll review your whiplash claim at no cost to you.