Whiplash is defined as an injury occurring to the neck in which a very rapid movement causes a sudden distortion of the structures in the neck. Whiplash is actually a non-medical term that describes a variety of neck injuries that occur usually in a car accident, however any incident which produces sudden cervical acceleration-deceleration could cause whiplash associated disorders.
Obviously the most common way to experience whiplash is to be involved in a car accident, which is why it is estimated that 14% of all driving insurance premiums are directed toward whiplash injuries. An interesting fact is in the past before we had cars whiplash was known as “railroad spine”, because people in train accidents would often report whiplash symptoms. Another interesting fact is that most whiplash injuries occur in extension, usually due to a accident in which the patient was rear ended. Whiplash is most commonly described as a sudden strain on the neck muscles, joints, and nerves.
There are 4 phases the neck goes through during a whiplash event. First phase is the initial position, or where the head and neck are situated before the collision. Second phase is the retraction phase, where the entire body is jolted backwards from the initial impact. Third phase is extension, when the head moves back and up faster than the body does. The last phase is the rebound phase, where the head then rebounds forward after maximal extension.
The last phase is directly due to the seat belt holding your body in position, but not your head and neck. Even though the seat belt is doing its job perfectly there can still be a great deal of torque and stress on the cervical muscles and vertebrae causing injury and damage to the head and neck.
Most report a dull aching pain in the neck and upper back. Referred or radiating pain often is reported running down into the shoulders and arms. In sever cases some people report tingling or numbness in the arms and hands. One of the more common symptoms is a constant headache, usually occurring days to even weeks after the accident occurs. If you have been in an accident your entire chiropractic whiplash treatment could be covered from your insurance.
Obviously try to avoid being in a car accident, do not text while driving, stay focused on the road, and always keep three car lengths between you and the drive in front of you. No matter what always wear your seat belt, you could be hurt a lot worse without it. If you have just been in an accident and sustained any type of car accident injury please call 911, and get yourself and others out of danger from other traffic.
After the accident make sure to put ice on your neck and mid back immediately, this will greatly reduce the amount of inflammation produced, and should cut down on some of the muscle pain. If you have been involved in a recent accident call Northern Edge Chiropractic LLC to get proper whiplash treatment in Plymouth MN and Maple Grove area Our chiropractors will take you through a full examination including vitals, range of motion, neurological, orthopedic and muscle testing.
We get great results with whiplash related disorders, and have everything needed to process your medical side of the personal injury claim.