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If You Drive or Ride in Cars, You Should Know This Information About Whiplash

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It should come as no surprise to you that car accidents frequently result in injuries. These are sometimes catastrophic and sometimes seemingly minor, but they all require professional attention; without treatment, it’s all too easy for minor injuries to turn into lost function and chronic pain. One of these commonly overlooked injuries is whiplash. Here’s what you should know about it:

What Whiplash Is and How It Normally Occurs

Whiplash is defined as “an injury caused by a severe jerk to the head,” and it most often refers to what occurs in the cervical spine when the head is snapped forward and back in a car accident. This motion is frequently caused by rear-endings, and can occur even when the cars involved in a crash are moving are slow speeds. It’s important to note that whiplash cannot always be easily diagnosed by its symptoms because symptoms often take several days to develop. If you’ve been in such a car accident, it’s highly likely you have whiplash.

The Most Common Symptoms of Whiplash

Stiffness and neck pain are the most common symptoms of whiplash, caused by sprains and strains in the cervical spine (damage to ligaments and muscles, respectively). Headaches are also experienced by more than two-thirds of patients, and some patients feel stiffness extending down into the torso. While some patients also experience dizziness, nausea, difficulty swallowing, blurred vision, irritability, fatigue and difficulty concentrating, these symptoms tend to resolve on their own relatively quickly. However, in some cases, all symptoms can persist for years.

How Car Accident Chiropractic Care Can Help

So how can you avoid having a whiplash injury cause long-term problems? The simplest answer is that you should seek treatment as quickly as possible after an accident (even if you’re not yet experiencing symptoms). Chiropractic services are a good place to start, since a chiropractic treatment plan can combine manual adjustments for the joints along with massage therapy for soft tissues. Chiropractic services are often covered by insurance after an accident, so the cost should be no different from seeing a traditional physician.

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