Sunday, December 16, 2018

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3 Steps To Reduce Whiplash Pain

Have you recently been in a car accident?  If you are experiencing pain in your neck after an accident, you may be suffering from whiplash. Whiplash, also called cervical sprain or strain, is a soft tissue injury. The sudden forward and backward motion of the neck beyond it's normal range of motion  may cause the muscles and ligaments to become over-stretched.

This type of injury can be caused by motor vehicle accidents, sports injuries, slips and falls, or assault. Unfortunately, for approximately 20% of whiplash sufferers, the pain can become chronic and debilitating.

 

 

Symptoms of whiplash may arise immediately post injury or develop days, weeks, or even months later. Symptoms may vary widely person to person, injury to injury. Whiplash discomfort may include:

  • Neck pain, sometimes radiating into the shoulders and upper back
  • Burning or tingling sensation
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Pain with neck movement
  • Spasms of the muscles of the neck and the lower back
  • Loss of hearing or tinnitus

In all cases where a neck injury is suspected, immediate medical attention is required to rule out any serious underlying conditions. Diagnosis of whiplash should include examination by a Physician. X-rays may be ordered to confirm there  are no bone injuries. A CT or MRI scan may be done if a herniated disc or significant ligamental damage is suspected.

 

If whiplash is the diagnosis, 3 conservative treatment options may help to reduce your symptoms.

 

  1. Hot / Cold
    The heat will increase circulation to the injured area and speed up the healing process and the cold will reduce swelling and provide pain relief.

 

  1. Medication
    Over the counter analgesics may help with your pain, in severe cases you may be prescribed muscle relaxants or stronger pain medication

 

  1. Movement
    A course of spinal manipulation or mobilization may be helpful in restoring range of motion, increasing circulation to the injured area, and hasten the healing process

Fortunately for those who are diagnosed with whiplash, most symptoms will subside within 2-4 weeks. Consulting with your doctor and implementing these three therapeutic modalities, may help to quicken your healing time so you can again live life without limitations.