If you have recently been in a car accident and are experiencing whiplash, you probably have a lot of questions. You may have even heard some rumors or myths about this condition. Sadly, in some cases, myths may stop people from getting the help that they need. Here is a look at five common whiplash myths and the truth behind them:
1. Myth: If whiplash pain doesn't start at the site of the accident, it wasn't caused by the accident.
In many cases, whiplash victims do not experience any pain at the site of the accident. Instead, these symptoms start six to twelve hours after the incident, and on average, they last 32 days. However, nearly 12 percent of victims say that they still experience pain six months after the accident.
If you have whiplash pain and you have recently been in a car accident, do not assume that the accident didn't cause your pain. Instead, make notes about all of your symptoms and when they started. That makes it easier for a knowledgeable doctor to conclusively link your symptoms to the accident.
2. Myth: Minor fender benders cannot cause serious whiplash.
According to some research, roughly 47 percent of whiplash victims play down their symptoms. These individuals do not want to look like they are being whiney or overstating their problems. If you are one of the many people who is downplaying their whiplash symptoms so you don't look weak or contrary, remember that whiplash is a serious condition that can be a result of all kinds of car accidents.
You may think that someone needs to be involved in a serious accident in order to have the "right" to complain about or be compensated for whiplash, but according to research, the severity of your accident doesn't necessarily determine the severity of your physical damage. Even minor accidents can cause serious whiplash.
3. Myth: It's better to wait for medical treatment until you are compensated.
If you have budgetary restrictions, it can be hard to pay for all of your medical treatments, especially if you need care that is not covered by your insurance. In some cases, people think that they should hold off on their treatment until they are compensated by the other driver. This strategy can save you cash in the short term, but it can be financially damaging in the long run.
Do not fall prey to this myth. If a doctor recommends a certain course of care, follow through with it. Not attending your medical appointments makes it look like you are not serious about your injuries. That may make it harder to get the compensation you need, as it may make the judge dismiss your claims of pain.
Additionally, it is easier to get compensated for expenses than it is for pain and suffering. Canada has a cap on non-pecuniary damages. That means that you can only get a certain amount of money for pain and suffering. You don't want to have to use that money for medical injuries that you could have been compensated for if you had just gone to the appointment and brought a receipt to the lawyer.
4. Myth: The car you drive has nothing to do with the extent of your whiplash injury.
In most cases, the driver of the other car is the one who is held responsible for causing your whiplash injuries, but in some cases, the car you drive may also have an effect on your injuries. Only 60 percent of cars have high ratings when it comes to protecting your head from whiplash.
That means that 40 percent of cars do not offer this level of protection. In some cases, a skilled whiplash attorney may be able to prove that the car manufacturer was responsible for your whiplash injuries.
5. Myth: Whiplash claims are fueled by the insurance company.
Unfortunately, this claim may prevent many people from getting the help and compensation they need after a whiplash injury. However, it's important to note that this claim is not true. Whiplash claims are usually instigated by people who truly need the money and support. In fact, a recent study in the UK revealed that less than a third of whiplash victims were urged to file a claim by their insurance companies.
If you are struggling with whiplash from a recent car accident, contact a whiplash lawyer today. These professionals can help you get the help and compensation that you need and deserve.