Whiplash… Is there definitely nothing we can do?
Whiplash is an injury caused by a sudden excessive movement of the neck. Although this can be caused by different types of accident such as aquatic, the most frequent cause of this injury is car accidents, and more specifically collisions, whether these are rear-end or side- on collisions, very common occurrences on urban roads.
To put this into context: you are waiting at a traffic light or you have just reached a traffic jam… and the car behind doesn’t stop. The direct consequence of this is an upper spinal injury that could become chronic.
Although you probably think there is nothing you can do to avoid this, you are wrong. The safety measures you can take to avoid a collision are as follows:
- Maintain a safe distance (avoid multiple collisions)
- Don’t break suddenly, allow those who are following time to see you.
- Remain alert. If you see that a collision is imminent hold on to the wheel and tighten your muscles.
Even if you take these measures accidents may still occur even if we are driving correctly, and especially when we are not exclusively responsible.
In order to minimize the impact of an accident you can:
- Adjust your seat correctly.
- Adjust your headrest to the right height. The top of the headrest should be in line with the top of your head.
- Keep your head 4-5cm from the headrest, don’t support your head against it or place your head further away than the indicated distance.
- If possible do not hold down your brake while stopped.
MOST SUITABLE DRIVING POSITION
The headrest’s central zone should be in line with the height of your ears
Adjusted over the collarbone and the chest without pressing down, it should be taut on the pelvis to avoid slipping under it in the case of a frontal car crash
The shoulders and back muscles should remain relaxed
If the vehicle has an air conditioner, the ideal temperature is 20º
Seat inclined backwards between 15 and 20 degrees in order for the thighs and the head to form a 110 to 120 degree arch
The lower legs should form a 135-degree angle with respect to the thighs in order to be able to comfortably reach the pedals