If you’ve recently suffered whiplash, you may be wondering how long the persistent pain and strain in your neck and surrounding muscles will last. Whiplash – most commonly caused by car accidents – can also result from falls and other motion-related incidences. Whiplash results whenever the head is rapidly swung back and forth on the neck.
Most of the damage caused by whiplash affects the soft tissues surrounding the spinal column: the muscles, ligaments, and tendons in your neck that support the head. In many cases, damaged caused by whiplash is equivalent to any other pulled muscle: temporarily uncomfortable, but not life-threatening. In other cases, however, the soft tissue damage caused by whiplash can be substantially more significant.
Because the neck muscles are in constant use, recovery times can be adversely impacted without proper medical attention. Additionally, symptoms like depression and mood swings are fairly common in whiplash patients. It’s important to have your unique case assessed as soon as possible. At Graybar Chiropractic, we encourage our North Carolina patients to schedule an appointment right away after an accident.
Whiplash takes time to develop
Whiplash symptoms may not manifest right away; in fact, it’s relatively common for symptoms to take as long as a week to appear. If you’ve recently experienced any head or neck trauma that could have caused whiplash, it’s advisable to seek out qualified medical assistance sooner, rather than later. Failure to treat and address whiplash symptoms could cause the damage to soft tissues around the spinal column to become even more pronounced and severe.
To diagnose whiplash and to pinpoint where the damage occurred, your healthcare provider may prescribe a series of tests, including X-rays, magnetic imaging, and computerized tomography (CT) scans to identify areas of tissue that appear disrupted. Once the areas affected by whiplash are identified, chiropractors will embark on a comprehensive treatment regimen, which will likely include a pain management strategy.
Treating soft tissue injuries
Whiplash is known for causing severe, longstanding pain that can adversely impact quality of life. Additionally, many whiplash patients also suffer from long-term behavioral changes, including depression and recurring mood swings.
The primary objective of any healthcare professional treating a whiplash patient is to reduce the amount of pain and suffering that they’re experiencing, as well as addressing the soft tissue damage causing discomfort.
Manual manipulation of the spine is one of the key treatment methodologies your healthcare provider may recommend for your whiplash injury. Because whiplash is fundamentally an injury affecting soft tissue surrounding the spinal column, it’s important to maintain and restore the full range of neck motion.
Physical therapy is another strategy that holistic healthcare professionals may recommend, in addition to hot and cold therapy. Over the counter medication, as well as soothing oils and natural anti-inflammatories, may help manage whiplash pain in a safe, natural and effective manner. In extreme cases, localized injections of anti-inflammatory drugs may also be necessary.
Graybar Chiropractic is a full-service holistic healthcare office serving residents of North Carolina at three convenient locations. We have the tools, expertise, and experience necessary to address even the most severe whiplash cases. Reach out today to schedule a consultation and learn more about our Chiropractic BioPhysics (CBP) approach to delivering individualized care.
Chiropractic BioPhysics, or CBP, is one of the most scientific, researched, and results-oriented corrective care techniques. CBP-trained chiropractors aim to realign the spine back to health, eliminating nerve interference and addressing the source of pain, fatigue, and disease. As with all chiropractic care, CBP is gentle, painless, and non-invasive.