If you have ever suffered a whiplash injury, you know how painful it can be.
Fortunately, there are several things you can do at home that will reduce the pain associated with your whiplash.
But it's imperative to see a medical professional like a chiropractor to diagnose and treat your whiplash injury properly.
Chiropractic care is an excellent way to treat the symptoms of whiplash and ease your pain.
There are also many treatment options your chiropractor can recommend to you depending on your unique situation and injury that can help relieve your pain.
In the article below, your Decatur whiplash chiropractor will explain how you can relieve your whiplash pain.
Table of Contents
- What Is Whiplash?
- What Are The Signs of Whiplash?
- Will Whiplash Go Away By Itself?
- Home Treatments For Whiplash
- Chiropractic Whiplash Treatment
- Using Chiropractic Treatment For Whiplash
- Contact The Arrowhead Clinic in Decatur
What Is Whiplash?
Before we dive into the best ways to relieve whiplash pain, let's take a look at what exactly whiplash is and how you know if you have it.
To put it simply, whiplash is a soft tissue injury to your cervical spine (your neck) caused by a sudden back and forth movement, similar to the cracking of a whip.
Whiplash is often caused by car accidents, even accidents that seem very minor at first.
Whiplash can be just a slight pain when you move your neck to an all-out muscle spasm that causes tension headaches.
A whiplash injury is a strain or sprain to the muscles and ligaments, or soft tissues, in the neck.
Your neck muscles often contract to protect themselves and can take weeks or months to recover.
It's estimated that about 2 million people in the United States suffer from whiplash every year, so there's a good chance that you will experience whiplash at some point in your life.
If you're ever involved in an accident, and you think you might have suffered a whiplash injury, you should visit a doctor of chiropractic as soon as you can for a proper diagnosis.
What are the Signs of Whiplash?
Knowing the signs and symptoms of whiplash will help you determine if you need to seek chiropractic care.
Many people ignore their symptoms or mistake them for typical soreness after an accident.
A little soreness is expected after an accident, but it shouldn't last more than a few days.
Some common whiplash symptoms are:
- Neck Pain
- Neck Stiffness
- Shoulder Pain radiating from the neck
- Upper Back Pain
- Decreased range of motion in your neck and shoulders
- Inflammation or pain in the upper back, shoulders, or arms
- Numb or tingling in your arms
- Increased pain when you move your neck
- Headaches radiating from the base of the skull
- Ringing in the ears
These whiplash symptoms can have a significant impact on your overall quality of life.
Constant pain and numbness can affect your mood and even change your personality.
It can also affect your ability to get quality sleep, which will directly impact your ability to recover from your injury.
Some whiplash symptoms are so severe that people can't take care of themselves, drive to and from work, or perform their typical day to day duties at work and home.
Will Whiplash Go Away By Itself?
Is it a good idea to forgo whiplash treatment and let it heal on its own?
In some cases, the symptoms of whiplash could disappear with very little intervention.
However, it is always in your best interest to seek chiropractic care after sustaining whiplash type injuries.
A study in 2016 from Science News found conclusive evidence that long-term untreated whiplash can re-route the regions of your brain that are connected to pain and pleasure processing.
That means that maybe whiplash doesn't ever go away on its own.
If you leave whiplash injuries untreated, there is a very high likelihood that it will continually get worse and damage other areas of your body, like your brain!
Home Treatments For Whiplash
The best self-care whiplash treatment to do at home is ice and heat therapies.
Ice will help reduce the swelling, and the heat will increase circulation and loosen your muscles.
To use ice, apply an ice pack for 15 minutes no more than once an hour.
You can apply heat for 15 minutes once every two or three hours.
When using ice and heat, you need to protect your skin.
Never fall asleep using ice or heat, and always wrap it in a towel for protection.
You also need to find a good balance between rest and staying active.
Stay active if possible, but don't do too much.
If a particular movement or activity makes your pain worse, stop doing it if you can.
But, don't rest too much to keep your muscles from becoming too stiff and worsening your range of motion.
You can also use over the counter pain medications for quick relief.
These aren't a good long-term fix, and you shouldn't overuse them, but if you need quick relief from excruciating pain, they are a good option.
Chiropractic Whiplash Treatment
Your first visit to your chiropractor will likely be a free consultation.
During your consultation, chiropractors will discuss the treatment options available to you that can help relieve your whiplash pain.
Chiropractic treatment is designed to alleviate your symptoms and treat your injury at the source to prevent the damage from worsening.
Your chiropractor may also be able to reverse any effects the injury has had on your body if you begin treatment in time.
When you use chiropractic care to treat whiplash injuries, chiropractors will find a treatment option that works for you.
Each treatment available is good in its own way, but your Decatur chiropractor will design a treatment plan that is tailored to fit your needs.
Using Chiropractic Treatment for Whiplash
If you've never visited a chiropractor before, dealing with the neck pain from a whiplash injury will likely be enough motivation to get you to schedule your first appointment and receive chiropractic treatments.
Chiropractors have access to cutting edge diagnostic technology so you can be sure they make a proper diagnosis of your symptoms.
X-rays and other imaging tests will help your chiropractor locate the source of your neck pain.
They will also rule out bone damage and locate a pinched or damaged nerve as well.
Once your chiropractor makes a diagnosis and understands the extent and location of your injury, they will design your treatment plan.
Chiropractic whiplash treatment will reduce your neck pain, decrease inflammation, and improve your quality of life.
Seeing your chiropractor regularly after your whiplash injury will also reduce the amount of time it takes to recover.
If you're dealing with whiplash, pursuing every treatment option available to you will ensure you make a quick and complete recovery.
And, if it's necessary, chiropractors can help you gather the required evidence to file a personal injury claim or a personal injury lawsuit against someone responsible for your injury in Decatur.
Receiving prompt chiropractic care will go a long way to prove your injuries and help win your claim.
Contact The Arrowhead Clinic in Decatur
If you are suffering from whiplash in Decatur, GA, after a car accident or any type of accident and you would like to see a chiropractor to help you with your pain, contact the Arrowhead Clinic in Decatur.
Arrowhead Clinic has been serving Georgia for over 40 years. Our office in Decatur is happy to offer a Free Consultation to all new patients.
To schedule yours, click the button below.