When someone is in a car accident, there is a good chance that the injuries are not always going to be immediately apparent. Whiplash is one of these types of injuries. The danger with whiplash is that symptoms may not be apparent until at least a day after the accident or even days after. Thus, it can become difficult for people to seek the proper medical attention for whiplash treatment right away. In many cases, people will go days or weeks with the pain before seeking treatment.
It is important to note that people need to seek an Emergency Room for open wounds or injuries after a car accident. After the ER treats these injuries, then schedule an appointment with us to see if there are any other issues with the back or neck. Waiting for any length of time to seek treatment can cause the whiplash to become worse, which can eventually lead to more serious injuries like ruptured ligaments, pinched nerves and even damaged blood vessels.
Whiplash can occur anytime there is a sudden jolt to the body that causes the head to move so quickly that it causes damage to the surrounding muscles, ligaments and/or any other connective tissues in the upper body. While the high majority of whiplash cases have a successful treatment outcome, some cases of whiplash are permanent. A permanent case of whiplash can mean years of enduring the persistent pain that comes with whiplash.
In order for someone to receive a proper whiplash diagnosis, we need to perform a full examination. This process includes a physical examination to check for the range of motion as well as any additional tests that we may require. Other tests can include X-rays, a CT scan and an MRI. We will also ask multiple questions about the cause of the injury, the location of the pain and the type of pain the patient is feeling. By conducting this examination, we can help to customize the treatment to the patient’s specific needs.
Whiplash symptoms and treatment
The following are some of the more common whiplash symptoms that can occur when someone is in a car accident:
- Any pain in the upper body that comes and goes
- Any stiffness experienced in the upper body
- Any numb or tingly areas felt in the shoulders, arms and/or legs
- Any dizziness or nausea that comes and goes
- Any weakness felt in the arms or legs
- Mild to extreme headaches
- Problems chewing and/or swallowing
Treating whiplash involves a focus on strengthening the body through the use of body mechanics. The overall goal of a specialized whiplash treatment plan is to control or diminish the pain while restoring the patient’s normal range of motion. This way, the patient is able to live everyday life to the fullest without pain.
The following options are the top treatments currently recommended for those who are experiencing whiplash injuries. Whiplash injuries can occur in more than just the neck which includes the back, arms and legs. We can develop a specialized treatment plan for each individual patient.
- Over the counter medications
- Prescription medications
- Muscle relaxants
- Hot/cold therapy
- Physical therapy
- Cervical collars
- Chiropractic care
Areas We Need to Focus On
The following four areas of focus are essential when it comes to treating whiplash.
1. Back pain care
Back pain is a common symptom for those who suffer from whiplash. When a person experiences extreme back pain, it can be difficult to perform even the simplest of tasks. Effective back pain treatment options include muscle relaxants, massage, hot and cold therapy and physical therapy.
2. Neck pain care
Neck pain is the most common type of pain that people with whiplash suffer the most. Neck pain can be felt in one particular area or it can radiate down into the shoulders, arms and hands. The most common neck pain treatment options include massage, hot and cold therapy and physical therapy.
3. Arm pain care
Arm pain most often results when there is pressure on the nerves, which is initially due to a neck injury. Effective and common arm pain treatment options include rest, hot and cold therapy and massage.
4. Leg pain care
Like the arms, the legs can also experience pain when the nerves are affected. Effective leg pain treatment options include hot and cold therapy and massage.
Call Us Today
Seeking the services of a spinal pain specialist is necessary for those who receive a chronic whiplash diagnosis. A spinal pain specialist can help relieve the discomfort and pain that comes with a whiplash diagnosis, allowing patients to have a full range of motion to lead productive lives. The first step is to give us a call and schedule an appointment.