Whiplash is one of the most common injuries that victims of car crashes and other accidents tend to sustain.
Whiplash is a soft tissue injury in the neck and upper back caused by a rapid or forceful movement of the neck. It gets its name because often, the neck moves like a cracking whip to produce these painful and disruptive symptoms.
Oftentimes, patients are told to treat whiplash by resting, applying hot and cold compresses, and waiting it out. The truth is that a more active approach is going to yield better results.
Chiropractic care is perfect for treating whiplash. Read on to learn the many benefits of seeking chiropractic care for whiplash.
Why You Shouldn’t Leave Whiplash Untreated
Minor whiplash may resolve itself on its own without any residual or long-term effects. However, serious whiplash can lead to symptoms including:
- neck pain
- loss of range of motion in the upper body
- pain in the shoulders and upper back
- pins and needles or numbness in the arms
- sleep disturbances
- difficulty concentrating
- mental health issues such as depression
Many of these symptoms arise when patients continue to live with whiplash for days or weeks on end. For example, leaving the pain untreated can make it difficult to fall or stay asleep. Living with constant pain can cause mood issues and lead to depressive or anxious spells.
Plus, that loss of range of motion can cause the body to adjust in ways that cause long-term damage. By trying to alleviate pain and pressure in the upper back and neck, you can put more strain on other areas of the back, creating secondary pain and tension.
The Benefits of Treating Whiplash with Chiropractic Treatment
Chiropractic treatment is beneficial for patients suffering from whiplash because it directly deals with the muscles, soft tissue, and spinal alignment. This is crucial for your healing and may be crucial for your personal injury claim. Let’s take a closer look at these benefits.
Addressing Muscular Dysfunction
One of the first treatments you may receive for whiplash is muscle stimulation and relaxation. A combination of pressure and stretching can help to alleviate the tension caused by whiplash and loosen the muscle tissue that has constricted.
This treatment may be paired with a massage to induce further relaxation, both physical and mental. An accident that causes whiplash can also leave the entire body sore and aching, which can affect your mood and limit your capacity to function throughout your day.
Treating Resulting Spinal Injuries
Though whiplash is predominantly considered a soft tissue injury, that rapid motion in the neck can cause neck joint misalignment, and the affected joints need to be identified and realigned to avoid long-term or permanent damage and unnecessary pain. Only a trained chiropractor should attempt to move these joints back into place, using either slow and gentle movement or a swift thrust.
This type of treatment can also be used to address a herniated or bulging disc that resulted from or was aggravated by the same accident that caused whiplash. Your chiropractor may also consider specific trigger point therapy to address any spinal joints that are showing signs of abnormal movement.
Giving You an Active Role in Your Recovery
Patients with whiplash may experience a feeling of frustration or helplessness if whiplash symptoms are left untreated. A trained chiropractor can not only provide in-person treatment but also give you the tools to further your recovery at home.
The McKenzie method consists of exercises that loosen the instability of affected discs and correct movement patterns that are detrimental to your spinal health. Your chiropractor will help you to perform these exercises and teach you how to perform the same or modified exercises at home.
Determining the Extent of Your Whiplash Injuries
Whiplash is a term that applies to a certain type of injury, not the extent of that injury. As we mentioned earlier, some people may experience minor whiplash that resolves itself in a few days’ time. Others who experience severe whiplash may find that their day-to-day changes drastically during the healing process, impacting their ability to work, perform activities of daily living, and enjoy life.
When whiplash and other injuries impact your financial well-being, you may find yourself filing a personal injury claim against the responsible party. In order to do so, you will need to establish the extent of your injuries. A chiropractor can assist in determining the extent of your whiplash injuries and what kind of treatment it will take for you to get back to your normal life.
If you are filing a personal injury claim against the person responsible for your injuries, you will need to mitigate damages. What that means is that you will need to seek proper treatment to prevent your injuries from getting worse, requiring more medical care and further reducing your ability to earn an income.
Chiropractic care is some of the best whiplash treatments. By pursuing regular chiropractic treatment, you can establish that you are taking reasonable steps to mitigate damages and protect your claim.
The Spine Center Is Here for You
If you are suffering from whiplash, we urge you to consider chiropractic treatment. Treating whiplash can improve your overall outcome, get you back on your feet faster, and prevent your condition from worsening. If you are considering filing a personal injury claim or you’re eager to get back to work, chiropractic treatment for whiplash is the path to take.
The Spine Center in Las Vegas is here for you. We are proud to help patients who live with chronic pain, suffer from recent injuries, and want to maximize their spinal health. To learn more, contact us today.