Did you know that more than two million Americans experience whiplash every year?
And that number is likely higher because many people with whiplash don't realize they have it.
Whiplash is caused by a sudden snap of the head forward and backward, a motion similar to the cracking of a whip.
That motion overstretches the joints, muscles, and ligaments of the neck and upper back.
You've probably heard of whiplash before, but there are some little-known facts about the condition that many people don't know.
In the article below, the Arrowhead Clinic of Decatur will reveal a few surprising facts you may not have known about this well-known injury.
Table of Contents
- Whiplash Occurs During Minor Accidents
- Pain Is Not The Only Symptom
- Symptoms Should Not Be Ignored
- X-rays Can Show Soft Tissue Damage
- You Should Seek Medical Attention Right Away
- Chiropractic Care Is Perfect For Whiplash
Whiplash Occurs During Minor Accidents
People think whiplash can only occur during high-speed accidents, but it does not take much speed to produce a whiplash injury.
Even minor fender benders can cause enough force to overstretch your upper back, neck, and head.
Modern vehicles are designed with safety areas that are meant to crumble upon impact.
When this happens, the car absorbs the energy of the crash and reduces the sudden jerking motion.
But when these areas fail to crumble, like after a minor car accident, the force is transferred to the occupants, likely causing whiplash.
Pain Is Not The Only Symptom
Neck and shoulder pain is the most common symptom associated with whiplash injuries, but it's not the only symptom.
It's still important to look for other symptoms.
Other symptoms of whiplash can include:
- numbness/tingling in the arms
- difficulty swallowing
- poor concentration
- jaw pain
- blurred vision
- sleep loss
- memory lapse
No matter how minor or severe the symptoms are, you should always be evaluated by a healthcare professional.
Symptoms Should Not Be Ignored
Neck pain is common immediately after a whiplash injury, but some people don't experience any symptoms until a few hours, days, or even weeks later.
Many people believe all injuries will be immediately apparent, but that's not the case.
No matter when your pain starts, it should never be ignored.
The full effects of an injury can take ten days to ten weeks to develop and even longer to heal.
Symptoms that are ignored can often lead to more serious, chronic issues.
It's always better to err on the side of caution and get evaluated no matter how you feel after the accident.
X-rays Can Show Soft Tissue Damage
X-rays aren't just important to show fractures and bone injuries.
X-rays can also be used to show soft tissue injuries that a radiologist may not see or may mark as normal.
Chiropractors take a special kind of X-Ray called a stress or flexion-extension X-Ray.
These x-rays will help chiropractors evaluate how bones fit together and whether there has been any damage to the ligaments or connective tissue.
Seek Medical Attention Right Away
Even if you feel fine after a car accident, you should still see a doctor right away.
The longer whiplash is left untreated, the longer the symptoms will last, and the less likely it is to be resolved.
Studies have shown that pain that persists longer then six months has much lower odds of total resolution.
But if you receive prompt treatment, your symptoms will gradually improve, and persistent symptoms will be easier to treat in the future.
Chiropractic Care Is Perfect For Whiplash
By using several different treatment techniques, your chiropractor can help relieve pain and encourage healing in the areas affected by whiplash.
Their methods are all-natural and free from the adverse side effects you get from pain medications and invasive surgeries.
Our Decatur, GA Whiplash Injury Chiropractor can help treat your whiplash.
If you're suffering from whiplash, visit the expert chiropractors at the Arrowhead Clinic of Decatur by clicking the button below.