Where to Position Your Car's Headrest

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The headrest in your car is an important but often overlooked safety feature that helps protect your head and neck in the event of a car accident.  Many people position the headrest for comfort, but this can vary from person to person.  The correct height to place the headrest is with the center of the headrest level with the rearmost portion of the back of your head level with the top of your ears.  One reason for this is that during a rear collision, your head will be thrown forward and back.  Having the headrest at the correct position behind your head will help prevent hyperextension of your neck during a collision.  An auto injury caused by a rapid back-and-forth movement of the neck is called “whiplash.”

During a rear-end auto collision, your body can ride up in the seat.  If you have the headrest in a lower than optimal position, your head may be drawn up and over the headrest allowing damaging hyperextension of your neck. 

It is important to place the headrest near the back of your head close enough to protect your neck in the event of a collision and best to have the headrest as close to the back of your head as possible.

Positioning the headrest of your car correctly can help to decrease severity of injury in the event of an auto accident, but it is important to seek treatment if you have been involved in an accident as symptoms may not occur immediately and outcomes are improved if treatment is sought quickly.  Contact your Chiropractor if you have been injured in an auto accident.