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What Are the Symptoms of Whiplash?

Whiplash is closely associated with rear-end auto accidents, but collisions during an athletic competition, physical abuse, and other traumas can be contributing factors as well. If you picture your neck as a whip, whiplash is when it cracks as you swing it. When you’re rear-ended during a collision, your neck snaps forward. Because your body is held in place by your seat belt, a severe enough crash can cause serious injury. But how do you know if you have whiplash? Immediately following the accident or injury, you’ll begin to suffer from headaches and neck stiffness. Neck pain isn’t far behind. These three indicators are the most common symptoms of whiplash. Whiplash is often called a neck sprain or strain, but it’s important to note those terms don’t necessarily mean you’re suffering from whiplash. If you’re beginning to experience any of these symptoms 24 hours after your accident, give the chiropractors at Effective Integrative Healthcare a call for whiplash treatment in Crofton, MD:

  • Neck pain and general stiffness
  • Worsening range of motion and pain
  • Headaches that form at the base of the skull
  • Pain or tenderness in your shoulder, upper back, and/or arms
  • A persistent tingling or numb sensation in your arms
  • Fatigue that isn’t corrected by sleeping
  • Infrequent or frequent dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Blurred vision
  • Ringing noises in your ear, also called tinnitus
  • Neck, shoulder, and back pain keeps you up at night
  • Irritability throughout the day
  • Concentration issues
  • Memory lapses
  • Depression

How Your Chiropractor Can Help Diagnose Whiplash

Unfortunately, soft tissue injuries – like whiplash – can’t be diagnosed by using standard x-ray technology. While you can visit a doctor for a CT scan or MRI, the Crofton, MD chiropractors at Effective Integrative Healthcare can perform additional tests to diagnose whiplash, particularly if it is done in coordination with your general physician. We can perform physical examinations, massaging and feeling your spine, shoulders, and neck and cross-referencing what we find with your symptoms. Once we’ve determined you’ve suffered a whiplash injury, our chiropractors, nurse practitioner, and physical therapists can get to work coming up with a treatment plan that guides you to full health.

When Should You Seek Chiropractic Whiplash Treatment? 

If you were involved in a minor or major automobile accident, you’ll want to ensure you haven’t suffered an injury. While broken arms and sprained ankles present symptoms immediately, that isn’t the case with whiplash. Be sure to pay attention to your body in the days following your accident. If you notice any symptoms of whiplash, don’t hesitate to call Effective Integrative Healthcare to schedule an appointment for whiplash treatment. Time is of the essence. Whiplash can linger for over a year and grow worse over time. It’s critical you see a doctor or our chiropractors immediately. One last thing to note is X-rays, MRIs, and CAT scans will rule out more significant injuries like broken vertebrae. Don’t wait. Visit Effective Integrative Healthcare today.

Different Chiropractic Whiplash Treatments You Can Seek

So, what kind of chiropractic whiplash treatments are available to you? Fortunately, there are several. Effective Integrative Healthcare is committed to discovering and mastering new technologies, all of which are designed to reintroduce comfort and a pain-free existence into our patients’ lives. Our chiropractors will use physical therapy, massage therapy, adjustment techniques, and state-of-the-art technology to get sufferers of whiplash back to the daily routine. We have a variety of methods available to us, including:

  • Instrument-Assisted Soft-Tissue Therapy: We use state-of-the-art technology to stimulate the soft tissue around your neck, shoulders, and upper back. This technique has been proven to be effective in “teaching” your muscles and soft tissue to heal. Ask our chiropractors about our instrument-assisted soft tissue therapy.
  • Instrument-Assisted Manipulation: In addition to instrument-assisted soft tissue therapy, Effective Integrative Healthcare chiropractors perform instrument-assisted manipulation. Similar to the spine adjustment therapy we perform every day, instrument-assisted manipulation is designed to realign your spin where it should be. Our equipment affords our chiropractors greater accuracy and preciseness.
  • Specific Spinal Manipulation: Effective Integrative Healthcare performs thousands of spinal manipulation procedures each year. When it comes to whiplash, our chiropractors need to be more precise. Specific spinal manipulation allows us to do so.
  • Interferential Electrical Stimulation: As medical science has accepted interferential electrical stimulation as an effective treatment for whiplash, our chiropractors have used it with increasing success. Using low-frequency electrical stimulation to decrease pain, swelling, and inflammation while increasing circulation and range of motion.
  • Manual Joint Stretching and Resistance Techniques: Physical therapy can work wonders in reducing the effects of whiplash in our patients. Our chiropractors and physical therapy professionals can teach you joint stretches and exercises that help to rejuvenate your spine, reduce whiplash-induced pain, inflammation, and loss of motion.
  • Flexion-Distraction Technique: Flexion-Distraction Therapy is a gentle treatment method that results in improved results in our patients. Flexion-Distraction Therapy is particularly helpful when whiplash pain is too severe for typical chiropractic care.
  • Therapeutic Massage: After a car accident or injury, whiplash results in an overall tightness throughout your body. Massage therapy delivers numerous benefits to patients suffering from whiplash. We can help work some of the tight spots out of your back and put you on the path to recovery.
  • Ultrasound: Therapeutic ultrasound treatments can be effective at reducing pain levels and restoring range of motion to pre-injury levels. We deploy ultrasound technology in combination with other treatment methods, resulting in a greater range of motion and reduced pain.

How Can I Improve My Recovery from Whiplash?

While the chiropractors and massage therapists at Effective Integrative Healthcare are skilled at using state-of-the-art technology and trusted massage and physical therapy techniques to nurse you back to health after suffering from whiplash, there are some things you can do at home to speed up the progress. Chiropractic care works best when combined with careful at-home exercises and self-care, including:

  • Rest: While you should rest periodically for the first 24 hours after your injury, it isn’t wise to continue lying around. Even though it hurts to move, you must do so. Too little activity will result in delayed recovery.
  • Heat and Cold: Alternate holding a heating pad and ice pack to the affected area for 15 minutes and do so at least six times each day. Both ice and heat are effective in reducing swelling and managing the pain associated with whiplash.
  • Over-the-Counter Pain Medications: Tylenol, Ibuprofen, and others can control mild to moderate whiplash pain while you’re in recovery. Be sure to take the recommended amount and drink plenty of water.
  • Tens Unit: We sell an at home device they could use to help with the muscle spasms.

Complications from Leaving Whiplash Untreated

Whiplash often turns into long-term problems when ignored. In fact, when it comes to whiplash, rest equals rust. Your instinct might be to wait until the neck pain, headaches, and irritability – in addition to other symptoms – go away on their own, but it’s not a wise course of action. If you haven’t taken care of your body, you run the risk of long-term damage. Severe whiplash can keep you from sleeping correctly, which can lead to other health issues. Working can become a challenge, leading to loss of income. The minute you notice the classic signs of whiplash, as stated above, it’s time to visit Effective Integrative Healthcare. After all, 99.2 percent of patients with low amounts of pain and stiffness recover within a month. However, patients with more severe pain and mobility loss are at high risk for years-long disability. Don’t delay.

Effective Integrative Healthcare Treats Whiplash

Effective Integrative Healthcare is well-known in the Crofton, MD-area for whiplash treatment that reduces pain and restores the range of motion needed to enjoy even the simplest of activities. From the Flexion-Distraction Technique to therapeutic massages, the chiropractors at Effective Integrative Healthcare can nurse you back to health and put you on a path to resuming your pre-accident level of activity. Enjoy pickup basketball and golf, restful sleep and pain-free Netflix evenings, and comfortable driving experiences and productive workdays again with our comprehensive array of whiplash treatments. To learn more, contact Effective Integrative Healthcare today.