When it comes to car accidents, whiplash is one of the most common types of injuries that people will suffer. While whiplash injuries are commonly associated with car accidents, this is not the only way that they occur. Traffic accidents are the most common cause of whiplash, but they could also be the result of a sports injury, a fall or any event where the head is suddenly jarred forward or backward.
Whiplash is actually a non-medical term that is used to describe a range of different injuries that may occur to the neck. In other parts of the body, these injuries would typically be referred to as strains or sprains. A whiplash injury occurs when a sudden force causes the head to go forward or backward in a way that over extends the natural range of motion. This can cause tears to soft tissue like tendons and ligaments and it can also cause the muscles to become torn or strained. Whiplash injuries do vary in severity with some being barely noticeable and others causing severe pain and disability to the injured party.
When it comes to the prevention of whiplash injuries, the truth is that there really isn’t much that can be done to prevent them from happening. Under the right conditions, anybody can sustain a whiplash injury. Of course, a person that takes care of their body and especially the areas that are prone to these types of injuries may reduce their chances of sustaining them, but the fact is that the type of force that causes whiplash is simply beyond the threshold of what the human body can withstand without suffering an injury.
The best advice for preventing a whiplash injury is to be conscious of the activities that you engage in where there is the possibility of whiplash and to take the proper safety precautions that will reduce the chances of getting hurt. When you ride in or drive a car, make sure that you properly adjust the seat, wear your seat-belt and make sure that the headrest is directly behind your head. When you engage in contact sports, employ the proper techniques for playing safely and use the correct safety equipment that will protect you from injury. All of this being said, you can take all of the safety precautions in the world and a whiplash injury can still occur under the right circumstances.
As for treating whiplash injuries after they occur, chiropractic therapy is recognized as one of the most effective ways to treat injuries and relieve the pain that is associated with whiplash. The reason that a chiropractor will be the best option for treating a whiplash injury is because they are injuries that primarily affect the spine and the muscles, tendons and ligaments of the neck.
To set a course of action for the treatment process, the Doctor of Chiropractic will need to perform an examination of the patient. Whiplash injuries not only vary in severity, but they also vary in regard to what parts of the neck are injured. With this being the case, the chiropractor will need to implement a plan that is unique to the individual patient and his or her circumstances.
Chiropractic adjustments are likely to play a key role in the treatment process. The type of force that causes a whiplash injury will usually cause the neck to become misaligned to some degree and a chiropractic adjustment will help to restore the neck to its proper alignment. Along with that, the chiropractor will also design an exercise plan that will help the patient to restore their range of motion and strengthen the injured area. A chiropractor may also employ therapeutic massage or physical therapy moralities like ultrasound, electrical stimulation or ice and heat treatments.
Whiplash injuries can happen in an instant and severe pain and some level of lost ability will often accompany them. These injuries can be rather complex to treat and it is one area where conventional medicine has often come up short. When it comes to rehabilitating a whiplash injury, the skills of a knowledgeable chiropractor are second to none.
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