Effects of Whiplash After a Car Accident in Chicago
Traffic accidents are the leading cause of whiplash.
A traffic accident with a hit from behind. This causes a sudden movement of the cervical spine forward (flexion) and backward (extension). It is the most common way to suffer a whiplash. Two out of ten traffic accidents usually cause consequences in the spine. Although it can also appear due to a sudden movement of the neck when turning, bending over or playing sports. The symptoms? Mainly intense pain in the neck, contractures, headache and dizziness.
The consequences of whiplash will depend on the severity of the injury and the speed with which treatment is administered. In fact, although most people recover from whiplash, between 15-20% develop chronic pain. In most of these cases, in addition to the accident, certain additional factors converge, such as weak muscles, little coordination, anxiety or work situations that tend to prolong the duration of the sick leave.
The mildest will be pain and muscle contracture. And they are the ones that suffer the most since 90% suffer from cervical pain (cervicalgia). The most serious are loss of mobility of the spine, vertebral fractures and associated neurological disorders such as muscle pain (8% suffer from low back pain), tension headache or migraines (18% of those who suffer from whiplash), tingling in the face or in the arms (4% suffer radiating pain in the arms), irritability, increased sensitivity to noise, weakness, vertigo and dizziness (around 20%). In addition, some studies have shown that the probability of suffering from fibromyalgia increases after suffering a whiplash.
Tips for Whiplash Treatment in Chicago
Regardless of the consequences, the first thing to do is treat the pain and cervical contracture. This requires medication (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and muscle relaxants), immobilization and rest. The goal is to relieve pain and prevent the patient from making sudden movements that could aggravate the situation. That is when the cervical collar is very useful.
It not only supports the neck, but also reduces pressure on the intervertebral discs and reduces muscle tension in the cervical region. The doctor will prescribe how long you can use it, but it should not be for a very long period because it can cause atrophy due to disuse and loss of proprioception of the cervical muscles. And that would lengthen the recovery period.
Once the acute phase is over, treatment must be started to recover mobility. This treatment must be gradual. It is advisable to go to a physical therapist to stipulate the times and phases, depending on the severity of the whiplash. They are exercises that strengthen the cervical musculature and thus avoid a relapse of discomfort. And it is important to follow it to the end and correctly. On many occasions you want to speed up the deadlines and discharge with sequels. This can worsen the quality of life of the patient since the pain becomes chronic and the levels of psychological discomfort and anxiety increase.
If you want to see if chiropractic care is right for your condition, please contact our chiropractors for whiplash treatment in Chicago to get the appropriate treatment for you. Call or contact us today to schedule an appointment.