One common injury reported following car accidents is whiplash. Whiplash occurs when the neck is subject to sudden back and forth motion. According to the Mayo Clinic, whiplash is an injury often suffered by rear-end car accident victims. While the most common pain associated with whiplash is located in the neck, whiplash victims can also suffer from stiffness and headaches. Individuals suffering from whiplash may lose their ability to move their necks in certain directions due to pain. Pain can also radiate down the shoulder and back, creating other associated problems with range of motion. When car accident victims suffer whiplash, the effects can be debilitating.
Researchers have studied the effects of certain kinds of rehabilitative care on helping whiplash victims recover fully from their injuries. According to the Clinical Journal of Pain, 50% of whiplash sufferers report pain one year after injury. While there are many factors that contribute to whiplash pain, one known factor is attributed to changes in the muscles in the neck suffered by whiplash patients. The neck muscles may lose strength following a car accident injury and this loss of strength can make it difficult for the muscles to perform their normal function of supporting the cervical spine. Certain types of rehabilitative and chiropractic care can help strengthen these muscles. Chiropractors like Dr. Jess Neilen with HealthPoint Chiropractic, for instance, can provide careful manipulation of the neck muscles that can help these muscles grow stronger and recover. Adjustments can result in better posture which can reduce tension and strain. Chiropractors also educate patients about posture and lifestyle changes that patients can undertake in order to hasten recovery.
Managed neck manipulation and exercise can have a positive effect on recovery for whiplash patients. While many studies have suggested that patients engage in neck-strengthening exercises in order to facilitate recovery, doing so alone can be risky. Patients put themselves at risk of not performing the exercises with the proper regularity, or may perform the exercises too rigorously, resulting in further injury. Researchers writing for the Clinical Journal of Pain studied several groups of patients and found that those who underwent managed physiotherapy, who were taught about the musculoskeletal system, who were coached on posture, and who performed prescribed neck exercises that increased in intensity, experienced faster recovery rates from whiplash.
The study found that patients’ whose care was more carefully managed had better outcomes.
Whiplash can be a debilitating condition. Victims may find themselves unable to work or to perform basic life duties. They may miss out on physical activity they formerly enjoyed.
Chiropractic care and other forms of integrative medicine approaches can help whiplash victims recover more quickly and experience better quality of life. The importance of integrative medicine has been featured in the news. The Huffington Post reports that Congress and other lawmakers struggled over defining aspects of the Affordable Care Act as it pertained to integrative medicine. Chiropractic services and massage therapists are not always covered by insurance plans, though health plans are required to cover rehabilitative services. Plans are required to provide up to 30 visits to the chiropractor or to a physical or occupational therapist. To find out more about what forms of treatment can help you if you suffered from whiplash, visit www.fortlauderdalewhiplash.com.