What is Whiplash?

Whiplash is a type of injury resulting from sudden acceleration or deceleration, for instance, of a moving vehicle. The brain, neck, and muscles are strained as the head moves rapidly from where the vehicle was traveling.

man holding his neck after car accident, possible whiplash injury
man holding his neck after a car accident, possible whiplash injury

This can happen to anyone who has been in a collision or has fallen out of bed unexpectedly. The force of the collision can be so great that it damages or tears muscles, ligaments, and other tissues in the neck leading to stiffness and pain. Talk to our chiropractor in Salt Lake City, UT today for whiplash examination and treatment at our clinic, Creekside Chiropractic.

What Causes Whiplash?

The most common cause of whiplash is vehicle accidents. However, people may also sustain whiplash from sports injuries, violence, or even falls. In some cases, whiplash may not be caused by accident but rather an injury sustained long before.

Typically, whiplash can range from mild to severe depending on the intensity of the force involved with the initial movement and how long it takes for the body to recover.

Symptoms of Whiplash

The symptoms of whiplash depend on how severe the injury is. In mild cases, you may only have pain or stiffness in your neck and back. But if the injury is more serious, you can experience severe pain or other long-lasting symptoms. Here are the common symptoms;

  • Unrestrained shaking of the head and body
  • Neck pain that worsens with movement or after activity
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness and disorientation

Diagnosis of Whiplash

The diagnosis of whiplash depends on the mechanism and severity of the injury. So the presence of any symptoms or signs, including pain, stiffness, or loss of neck range of motion, should be evaluated by a healthcare professional.

An x-ray is not routinely needed to diagnose whiplash. However, if you have persistent or recurring neck pain or tenderness after an injury, imaging may be necessary to rule out other causes for your symptoms. Here are some other tests used to diagnose whiplash;

  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)

This test uses a magnetic field to produce images of the brain, spinal cord, and other structures in the body. It can be used to detect damage caused by an injury or disease.

  • Computed tomography (CT) scan

This test uses X-rays to make detailed images of your body. CT scans are more likely to show signs of injury than MRI and can be used in cases where you have no symptoms despite being involved in an accident.

Chiropractic Treatment of Whiplash

The chiropractic treatment of whiplash focuses on relieving pain and restoring normal function. A chiropractor may recommend various treatments to reduce pain and bring healing effects to muscles and joints.

Foremost, the chiropractor will start by determining the severity of the injury. Then begin by treating the strained or injured muscles by adjusting them back into place using gentle spinal adjustments or adjusting soft tissue areas with massages or cupping therapy.

Chiropractic Care for Whiplash in Salt Lake City, UT

Whiplash isn’t just a minor headache or sore neck either; it has the potential to alter your life significantly. And while there are certain things to be mindful of when recovering from whiplash and seeking care for it, seeking out chiropractic care is essential for a speedy recovery and improving quality of life post-injury.

Ultimately, if you suffer from acute neck pain due to whiplash, contact Creekside Chiropractic to schedule an appointment in Salt Lake City, UT today. Our chiropractor will provide a thorough exam and discuss treatment options.

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