Whiplash is a generalized term referring to a soft tissue injury that occurs when the head and neck are violently jarred outside the normal range of motion.
Aside from soft tissue damage to the neck, whiplash can also cause damage to joints, discs, muscles and nerve roots, causing pain and trauma out from the neck into others areas of the body, such as down the spine, and through the shoulders. The vast majority of these injuries are caused by rear-end collisions, but they can also be caused by any sudden impact.
Whiplash, though downplayed by some doctors and insurance companies, can be the source of long-term pain and can even develop into Degenerative Disc Disease.
Whiplash jerks your head violently backward (hyperextension) and forward (hyperflexion), and in doing so, injures your neck. In a motor vehicle collision, such an injury can be much worse if the neck is turned to the side at the time of the collision. Whiplash is often obtained along with concussions and more serious injury. Whiplash can affect the neck on a short term or a long term basis, and it can leave the neck forever vulnerable to injury.
Whiplash can have both physical and psychological impacts, including:
While some neck injuries caused by whiplash can heal quickly, other incidents can cause more serious conditions like Degenerative Disc Disease or a fracture/dislocation of the vertebra.
Treatments for injuries caused by whiplash depend on the severity and many other factors. Medication may be prescribed, a neck brace may be required, or physical therapy may even be ordered.
The most reliable way to diagnose a Whiplash injury would be through a Digital Motion X-ray (DMX). A DMX allows the doctor to see soft tissue damages and instabilities in your neck.
It is essetial to get a whiplash injury diagnosed and treated properly right away. After a whiplash injury, your neck’s natural curve may be reversed, which unevenly distributes the weight of your head and may further misalign the veterbrae. This condition can lead to arthritic degeneration and recurring pain in the months, years and even decades to come.
The courses of treatment will vary depending on the kind, placement, and extent of your injury. Your treatment may include physical therapy, traction, cervical collar, trigger point therapy, ultrasound, massage, exercises, chiropractic treatment, neurological evaluation or medication, and perhaps more.
It is essential to pursue treatment immediately. Do not wait to pursue the health and stability of your neck.
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Ice is one of the simplest, safest and most effective self care techniques for injury, pain or discomfort in muscles and joints
During an initial injury, tissue damage can cause uncontrolled swelling. This swelling can increase the damage of the initial injury and delay the healing.
If you use ice immediately within the first 48 hours, you can reduce the healing time by up to 80%
When you visit us at the Whiplash and Injury Clinic, ask about our Cold Packs. Our gel-filled Cold Packs are made of the most durable materials. It is a silky nylon/pvc material that is smooth against the skin.
This 5×8 inch cold pack fits comfortably around your neck or wrapped over your shoulder, wrist, ankle, knee or any other injured area