Do you know the indications of whiplash? Experts believe more than three million Americans sustain a whiplash injury each year, many of which never seek treatment.
Leaving a Whiplash injury untreated can lead to long-term damage.
Discover more about whiplash and how chiropractic treatment options can help.
What is Whiplash?
Whiplash is the recognized term for “cervical acceleration-deceleration injury.”
Whiplash affects the muscles, tendons, ligaments, nerves, discs, and vertebrae of the neck resulting from the sudden hyperflexion and hyperextension of the neck.
When an individual experiences an unexpected, sudden force that forcefully moves the neck, the tendons and ligaments holding the vertebrae in the correct position are damaged, causing misalignment of the vertebrae and irritation of the adjacent nerve roots.
This, in turn, can cause decrease functionality of the body parts controlled by these nerves.
How does Whiplash Occur?
Whiplash is a common condition most often associated with automobile accidents.
It can also be caused by an array of activities such as head-banging to heavy metal music, amusement park rides or contact sports.
There many factors that can make a person susceptible to a whiplash injury, such as previous Whiplash injuries, vertebral subluxations, arthritis, and osteoporosis.
There is some controversy regarding how much force is necessary to cause a whiplash injury.
It has been documented that an automobile accident occurring at just five mph can have enough power to cause one.
What are the Symptoms?
A whiplash injury can vary widely regarding severity and onset, but some common symptoms associated with this type of damage are as follows:
- A reduction or loss in the ability to move the neck
- Blurred or altered vision
- Dizziness and vertigo
- Muscle spasm
- Neck stiffness and pain
- Numbness/pins and needles in hands and arms
- Pain in hands and arms
- Ringing in the ears
- Sleep disturbances
Remember: Whiplash symptoms may appear immediately or there may be a delayed onset.
A delayed onset can prevent a person from connecting the symptoms with the injury.
This disconnect can lead to unnecessary pain and discomfort for an individual that doesn’t realize why they are suffering.
What Should I Do if I Think I Have Whiplash?
If you think you may have sustained a whiplash injury, either recently or several months or years ago, it is critical to schedule an examination esteemed chiropractor who is experienced in treating whiplash injuries.
Research studies show that chiropractic care is effective in treating acute whiplash injuries and preventing the patient’s symptoms from becoming chronic.