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Head Restraint Safety

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November 15, 2004

Thomasville - If you've ever been rear ended in a car wreck, you may of had some of these symptoms: "You end up with tight muscles, sore neck, dizziness, headache," says Chiropractor Dr. Heather M. Harper.

But sometimes the injuries are more extensive. She says, "A lot of times it can get severe, you can have spinal cord injury, disk problems."

And according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety your car seat head rest could be to blame. The more space there is between the back of your head and the head rest, the more chance you have of straining your neck if you are in a wreck. To decrease those chances, there should be a gap of no more 4 than inches.

Cars that have whiplash injury prevention seats, like Volvo received some of the best ratings in crash tests that measured head restraints. The Dodge Neon and B-M-W 3 Series received poor ratings, but even if your car didn't score highly, you can use normal precautions to be as safe as possible on the road.

Harper says, "I guess the most important thing is your Seat belt. It will protect you from going hyperflexion, and having your air bags."

And by observing all of the safety features you will hopefully avoid a big pain in the neck. To see the test results of your car, click here, and scroll down to rear crash safety.

posted at 4:49 PM by karen.collier@walb.com