Whiplash injuries are serious and can leave a person in agony if not treated properly. All too often, patients come into our office weeks after a car accident complaining of neck pain and don’t realize that whiplash has occurred.
Whiplash is the sudden, rapid extension and flexion of the neck which causes damages to the:
These injuries are rather unpredictable and not easy to determine without input from the patient. Normal x-rays will not show the extent of the injury, so dealing with an expert chiropractic treatment center is the first thing we recommend. Call us today at (360) 636-2636 to schedule your first exam.
Damage can occur to connective tissues, joints and the nervous system in severe cases.
There are four phases a person will go through when suffering whiplash. These phases include:
Impact, often from a car accident, causes the back to flatten against the seat. This impact causes the cervical spine to compress, damaging the joints and discs in your neck. As you jolt forward, the neck is pushed back, causing the brunt of the damage.
After phase 1, a person’s torso jolts forward while their neck continues moving backward. This causes the natural curvature of the spine to recoil. The forward movement of the body that causes the head to be pushed back is where the majority of whiplash injuries occur.
As the torso moves back into the seat, the neck and head accelerate forward. This is where flexion occurs. This is the time when a vehicle begins to start slowing down and the driver has likely applied the brakes, hoping to stop.
A seatbelt, if worn, will keep the torso in place, while the neck is propelled forward, causing injury. This causes massive flexion to the neck and is where severe injuries occur. The head is free to move and bends in a violent forward motion putting strain on the vertebra and can even cause brain injury.
Whiplash injuries are not limited to neck pain. Patients that we see often have:
Through manual manipulation, we’re able to restore the spine’s natural movement while ensuring that the vertebrae go back into the proper position. This is the most important aspect of treating whiplash and will minimize long-term damage.
In very rare cases, medical intervention may be needed when inflammation and pain is too much for the patient.
If you have suffered whiplash injuries, give us a call today at (360) 636-2636 to schedule an appointment.