Think You Might Have Neck Pain and Whiplash?
Those who have experienced whiplash know it is followed by a sore neck. Many are often surprised that whiplash can take several days after the incident to actually set in. Those are simply the facts, and the signs that after an incident you have indeed had whiplash include:
- Sore Neck
- Stiff Neck and/or Shoulders
Chances are that those who are familiar with these symptoms listed above have had whiplash at some point. Luckily, the majority of the pain that accompanies whiplash generally subsides with time. However, you may nevertheless be left with some of these symptoms even though the pain subsides, if the proper steps to correct it haven’t been taken. It is estimated that half of the folks will continue to have some headaches, dizziness, or form of neck discomfort. This can all be minimized with the proper treatment approach. You can address it all with the right treatment approach: Stiffness, headaches, and dizziness.
What happens During a whiplash incident, the muscles that connect the neck and head together are stretched too quickly, causing small tears within these muscles. The muscles, in turn, then contract and tighten as a protective mechanism. the muscles on one side of your neck are tight, and or not, this causes Your brain gets confused and misinterprets where your head is when the muscles on one side of your neck are loose while those on the other side of it are tight. The muscles on the loose side are telling the brain the head is turned one way, while the muscles on the other (tight) side of the neck are telling it the opposite. The brain then tries to make adjustments with your vestibular system and eyes. Your feelings of wooziness or dizziness are the direct result of these adjustments. That, my friend, is how whiplash causes dizziness.
Joints and nerves near your neck and head are compressed when the muscles in your neck tighten up. These joints and nerves send off pain signals when they are compressed. These pain signals can cause you literal headaches as well as facial pain in your cheek, jaw, and forehead. This type of headache is frequently misdiagnosed as a migraine, but this is how whiplash causes headaches.
Those who still have these symptoms need to see a physical therapist who specializes in whiplash. Physical therapy is an effective treatment option for whiplash, especially when combined with other treatments, including bracing. A good therapist will provide relief and restore proper function and movement of those soft tissues in your neck that suffered damage. They will also address coordination as well as add strength re-training for the neck muscles which will help you prevent further injury. Strength re-training allows the muscles to recover from the tearing.
Coordination is what helps your brain, head, and neck to all communicate better until they are on the same page to agree on where your head is in space. This is what prevents muscles from tightening on one side of your neck and prevents dizziness. This is what we do for you at Southwest Physical Therapy:
- We expertly identify and explain the root cause of your issue to you, in layman terms you can understand.
- We generally improve your pain within a couple of sessions.
- We help you get your focus back. Whiplash and neck pain can seriously affect concentration. Southwest Physical Therapy helps you become re-engaged in your life.
- We help you sleep better. It’s a vicious cycle when you can’t heal because you can’t sleep, and pain causes difficulty finding comfortable positions to sleep.
- We provide you peace of mind knowing that you aren’t condemned to a life of neck pain, dizziness, and headaches.
- We basically get you your life back. You are freed from the daily whiplash effects that are so annoying.