Whiplash is not just affected by speed of collision. Whiplash can also be made more or less severe by who you are, how your headrest is positioned, and even level of education.

You might be surprised at some of the factors that affect how bad your whiplash injury is.

Your Gender Affects Whiplash

Gender Gap


Image by hiromy

Women have a higher risk of whiplash injury than men. The research suggests a number of possible causes for this discrepancy, including weaker neck muscles, smaller cervical vertebrae endplates, and lower bone mineral density. These statistics, of course, do not apply to all women and there will be outliers.

Weight does not appear to have a strong effect on whiplash, with women receiving worse whiplash injuries across all weight categories.

Your Age Affects Whiplash

It’s not quite as simple as ‘your risk of whiplash grows as you age’, as we discuss in our article about age and whiplash. However, age is a very real factor in how well your body responds to whiplash, how much damage is dealt by whiplash, and thus how much compensation you might expect to receive for pain, suffering, and the impairment of your ability to live your life.

A simplified way of describing it is that whiplash becomes a worse and worse problem until your young adult years. During adulthood, whiplash is less of a problem again, but as old age approaches the muscles become weaker and whiplash starts to be much more of a risk.

Your Other Illnesses Affect Whiplash

Again, we have already discussed how other illnesses affect whiplash elsewhere, but it is useful to have a summary.

Whiplash is affected by your physical limitations – these can affect your ability to recover and exercise properly, exacerbating the effects of whiplash. It is also an injury that has an unusually large psychiatric component, which may involve severe depression and anxiety.

When these two factors combine, you can end up with compounding problems that greatly amplify the long-term effects of a whiplash injury.

Your Headrest Affects Whiplash

Having a headrest positioned too high or too low can greatly affect how bad your whiplash injury is.

A headrest being positioned too high could lead to extra head injuries, as you are more likely to hit your head on the metal bars at the base of the headrest. A headrest being positioned too low is simply not doing its job, allowing much greater extension-flexion injuries and providing no support.

What Else Affects Whiplash?

There are a number of other factors beyond our control that affect whiplash, including level of education and height, in addition to whether or not you are a superhero.

Ultimately, there are a number of factors beyond the immediate circumstances of the road traffic collision that determine the outcome of a whiplash injury, and many of them will play some role in determining how much compensation you can expect to receive.

For a deeper look into how some of these factors affect whiplash injuries, consider checking out some of the more in-depth articles listed here.