We’ve all heard of whiplash and I’m sure that most reading this know of at least one person who has been affected by whiplash – whether minor or severe. The most important thing if you have been injured in an accident, is to see a medical professional right away in order to get a prompt and accurate diagnosis and receive treatment. But first, people should be aware of what whiplash is, how to spot symptoms and effectively treat.
Whiplash – What is it?
A neck injury that is caused by forceful, rapid back-and-forth movements of the neck
Causes of Whiplash
- Automobile Accidents – rear-end collisions are the most common causes of whiplash
- Physical Abuse or Assault – being punched or shaken
- most common injury sustained in “shaken baby syndrome”
- Contact Sports – being tackled while playing football, rugby, etc.
Symptoms & Signs
- Neck pain and stiffness that usually develops within 24 hours of the incident
- Worsening pain with movement of the neck
- Loss of range of motion in the neck and shoulders
- Headaches that begin at the base of the skull
- Tenderness or pain in the shoulder, upper back, or arms
- Tingling or numbness in the arms
- Ice or Heat – apply ice or heat for 15 minutes at a time; up to 6 times a day
- Over-the-counter pain meds – Tylenol, Advil, Motrin IB, etc.
- light stretching
- rotating the neck in both direction
- tilting the head from side-to-side
- bending the neck towards the chest
- rolling the shoulders
- Physical therapy
- Chiropractic Therapy
The purpose of getting a correct diagnosis is to begin treatment right away in order to restore your normal range of motion and relieve pain.