Whiplash is a non-medical term used to describe neck pain following an injury to the soft tissues of your neck (specifically ligaments, tendons, and muscles). It is caused by an abnormal motion or force applied to your neck that causes movement beyond the neck’s normal range of motion.
Whiplash happens in motor vehicle accidents such as car crashes, auto accidents, and truck accidents, as well as during sporting activities, accidental falls, and assault.
The most frequent cause of whiplash is a car accident. The speed of the cars involved in the accident or the amount of physical damage to the car may not relate to the intensity of neck injury; speeds as low as 15 miles per hour can produce enough energy to cause whiplash in occupants, whether or not they wear seat belts.
Other common causes of whiplash include contact sport injuries and blows to the head from a falling object or being assaulted. Also, Repetitive stress injuries or chronic strain involving the neck (such as using your neck to hold the phone) are a common, non-acute causes.