In Devner, Aurora, and Castle Rock Colorado Chiropractor
Whiplash is caused by a sudden jolt to the neck. This means that a strain is put upon the muscles and ligaments. In turn, this can cause a great deal of pain and discomfort. It has been found that women are more prone to whiplash injuries as their necks have weaker muscles compared to males, though it can happen to anyone.
Auto accidents have historically been a major contributor as it relates to new cases. The most common cause of whiplash is through a road traffic accident. Even the slightest bump can actually cause a whiplash injury, though it could be weeks later before you begin to feel the symptoms.
Symptoms of Whiplash often include one or more of the following:
Pain and stiffness in the neck, which can occur hours later after the accident. Usually the most intense pain is felt on the following day.
Turning and bending can prove difficult.
The shoulders and arms may suffer with pain and stiffness.
You may begin to suffer with pain or stiffness in the back.
Headaches are a common side-effect from suffering whiplash after an auto accident.
Some may experience dizzy spells, blurred vision, pain within the jaw, and some swollen areas around the facial area.
Some may prove to be tired and irritable for a while following the accident.
A lack of concentration with regards to the things that they do.
Should you suffer from a whiplash injury, you do need to be cautious. It is an injury that can result in either spinal injuries, or spinal cord damage. Following an auto accident, paramedics usually place a cervical collar around the patient’s neck to restrict movement. Then, when at the hospital, tests and x-rays will be administered to see if there has been any muscle damage. If nothing is discovered, but the patient is still in pain, the collar may be left on for a while to give the area time to heal.
If the pain persists, then further x-rays may be required. These could be dynamic x-rays, where the head is placed in a forward and backward position. Or the patient may be sent for an MRI. Both of these diagnostic tools may detect a soft tissue injury that a standard x-ray could have missed. In such cases, the cervical collar will be left on the patient, and some therapy sessions may be organized to help to ease the pain. However, it has been found that continued immobility and excessive rest can increase the chances of chronic symptoms developing. This is because it can lead to muscle atrophy and decreased blood flow to the area. In turn, it can mean that recovery time takes longer, so, it is advisable, if you have suffered from a whiplash injury that you begin some gentle exercise four days after the accident. Although you don’t want to overstretch the neck muscles, you do need to strengthen them to enable a full recovery. Attending some physical therapy sessions can aid with recovery after a whiplash accident.
It is important that anyone who has suffered with a whiplash injury understands that they can make a full recovery if they take the right steps to aid in building and strengthening the muscles and ligaments in the neck. Come see us soon, and thanks for reading.