Whiplash is no joke! The aches and pains of whiplash can be so severe that even the most menial of daily tasks are challenging to perform. Or, it may only be a mild annoyance that prevents you from turning your head to look over your shoulder or to the side.
There’s more to whiplash than you may think. Here are 5 facts about whiplash that you may not be aware of:
- Whiplash injuries may occur at speeds less than 5 mph. While it’s hard to believe that your body may become injured at such slow speeds, researchers conducting low-speed rear impact tests conclude that almost 30% of people in the impact tests developed symptoms related to whiplash at speeds of just 2.5 mph. Keep in mind, though, that a lower-speed collision does not necessarily mean that that injury your body sustains is reduced as well.
- There can be many whiplash symptoms other than pain. Although neck pain and shoulder pain are the most common symptoms associated with whiplash injury, other symptoms may include:
Some of these symptoms may be present immediately after an accident, or they may
develop slowly over hours or even days.
- X-rays are generally negative for neck fracture. Advancements in vehicle seats and headrest designs have helped to reduce the number of severe head and neck injuries resulting from rear-end collisions. Typically, x-rays are negative for fractures of the cervical spine. A common finding associated with whiplash injuries, however, is a straightening of the cervical curve. This can result from persistent muscle spasms and is generally quite painful.
- During a whiplash-inducing impact, the neck is forced into an unnatural “S” curve. There are seven vertebrae of the neck that combine to form a 35 to 45-degree curve. Studies indicate that during a rear-end collision the body is forced back into the car seat and at the same time moves upward, which causes the lower cervical vertebrae to hyperextend, and the upper cervical vertebrae flex forward. It is thought that this causes the muscles, tendons, and ligaments to experience strain as they work to protect the vertebrae against the opposing forces.
- Chiropractic treatment can help with whiplash injury. Chiropractors are trained to diagnose and treat many of the injuries that are often associated with whiplash. Your chiropractic doctor will collect a thorough history and perform a physical examination. He or she may request x-rays or other imaging. Treatment and spinal manipulation may be performed on the spine, soft tissues, and joints. We can also teach you proper home care for your injuries. Treatment time can range anywhere from a few weeks to a few months depending on the severity of the injury.
To find out if chiropractic care can help your injury or circumstances, schedule a consultation and discuss your needs with our professional team. Give a chiropractor. like a chiropractor in Palatine, IL, the opportunity to show you how we can make a positive impact on your life. Call today!
Thanks to our friends and contributors from Lotus Wellness Center for their insight into chiropractic care.