In a motor vehicle accident where your car is rear ended, you suffer less neck injury if your head is touching the head rest at the time of impact.
The makers of expensive cars have noticed that in the population, forward head carriage is quite prevalent and now, they are making their head rests with the rest forward of the seat which in their mind is helping the buyers of their cars to suffer less injury.
However, they are in actuality causing them to have problems.
Forward head carriage has been scientifically proved to contribute to tension headaches, pins and needles in the hands, neck pain, mid thorasic pain, lower back pain, shoulder pain, dizziness and the list goes on.
Consequently I have had more people appearing to my office suffering these sorts of symptoms after having long drives in their nice new cars.
So what do you do?
We should drive with our seats in an upright position and the head rest level with the top of the car seat. Your head should be touching the rest in this position. Try and achieve this with your car, and if you are looking to buy a new car, make sure this can be achieved with the new car. If you can’t achieve this with your car, contact your dealer – DON’T REMOVE THE HEADREST ENTIRELY – this would cause you severe damage should you be involved in an accident.
Additional note for women – hair clips and hair style while driving.
If your wear thick bull clips at the back of your hair, or have a hair style such as a thick pony tail or plait that starts at the back of your head, you should take this out while driving as it creates the same forward head carriage as would occur with the headrest forward of the car seat, and it will also promote the same symptoms.