After an motor vehicle accident, even a “minor” one, be wary of anyone who says to you; You’ll be sore for a couple of days and then it should go away.
Whiplash symptoms sometimes do not manifest immediately after trauma, but only after several weeks or even months. Here at Meridian Chiropractic in Indianapolis, we’ll be able to determine between superficial and serious injury. Accident victims may not be aware that damage has been done to the muscles, ligaments or connective tissues in their neck and upper back by the sudden impact that may have thrown their head in any direction, forward, backward or to the side. When too much time has passed since the accident, any neck pain or back pain felt is often attributed to sciatica or arthritis. Many people still ignore this and just rely on pain killers bought over the counter. Eventually, the damage can become permanent.
Neck pain that extends from the head to the shoulders and between the shoulder blades is reported by most auto accident victims who get whiplash. Facet joint pain is felt as a tenderness left or right of center at the back of the neck. Disc injury from tears in the fibers of the outer disc wall may cause disc degeneration or herniation, and the resulting compression and irritation triggers muscle weakness and pain in the upper back, shoulders and arms. Damaged muscles and ligaments may heal incorrectly and restrict normal range of movement.
Many whiplash patients also experience recurring headaches mostly caused by injured ligaments, muscles and facet joints in the cervical spine. These supporting structures need to be treated and restored properly in order to resolve the headaches.
Other headaches may be caused by mild to moderate brain injury brought about by whiplash. The impact of an auto accident can bounce the brain against the skull. Aside from headaches, the patient may also experience disorientation, mild confusion, irritability, forgetfulness, difficulty in concentrating, depression, emotional instability, sleep problems, loss of sex drive and altered sense of sight, smell and taste.
Dizziness can also be a major problem stemming from either injury to the brain or to the facet joints of the cervical spine.
Another head problem that can occur with whiplash is temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ), where pain and clicking or popping sounds are experienced with every jaw movement. This can complicate further and cause headaches, ear pain and facial pain. Speaking and eating become difficult.
Finally, lower back pain is often experienced by patients since the impact of auto accidents usually causes compression in the lower back.
In chiropractic treatment, the spine is manipulated manually to reestablish the normal positioning of the spinal vertebrae, realigning muscles, tendons and ligaments and enabling the patient to move normally again. It is considered a most effective treatment for whiplash.
With correct chiropractic treatment, cases of whiplash can recover in six to nine months, bringing complete pain relief. Afterwards, the patient can even go back to playing any sport. It is, however, recommended that this be done with accompanying massage to ensure proper protection from injury. Consult with Meridian chiropractic for healing from your injury today.