Getting Help for Your Whiplash
By High Desert Family Medicine
December 10, 2020
Category: Osteopathic Care
Whether you were recently in a car accident or experienced a head or neck injury from a sports-related accident or bad fall, you may be dealing with whiplash as a result. Whiplash usually appears 1-2 days after an accident or injury and is often characterized by neck pain, stiffness, inflammation, or limited mobility. If you are dealing with whiplash here’s how an osteopath can help.
Here at our practice, we offer various gentle but effective hands-on techniques that improve range-of-motion within the neck. Soft-tissue massage can also help to alleviate tight, spasming, or painful muscles. Mobilization techniques and stretching exercises help to realign the discs of the cervical spine, to improve how the body functions as a whole.
An osteopath will also provide you with a variety of exercises that you can perform between treatment sessions to help ease symptoms and speed up the healing process. Depending on the severity of your injury, your osteopathic doctor may recommend anywhere from two to six sessions.
How quickly will whiplash heal with osteopathic care?
Our goal is to help restore full function and get rid of the pain as quickly as possible. With that said, it can take anywhere from several weeks to several months, depending on the severity of your whiplash. If you notice symptoms returning, you must call your osteopath right away.
How can I ease my whiplash symptoms?
The way you care for yourself during this time is just as important as the treatments you get from our osteopathic team. You must rest as much as possible, avoiding any activities that would require fast, sharp neck movements. Light movement and stretching can help keep the ligaments and muscles limber and loose, which can reduce pain.
You may wish to apply ice to your neck for the first 48 to 72 hours after your injury; however, you will want to avoid using ice after 72 hours, as this could impede the healing process and may even lead to more inflammation.
What are the signs of whiplash?
Anytime the ligaments in the neck are overstretched or pulled out of alignment the result is often pain, stiffness, and limited mobility. Those with whiplash often notice trouble moving or turning their head. You may experience more headaches or trouble sleeping. Those with more severe symptoms may have pain that radiates to the shoulder blades, back or arms.
For musculoskeletal complaints and injuries, an osteopath can help you find natural, alternative ways to get back on track. Our osteopathic team wants to help you get the treatment you need.