Is Whiplash a Serious Injury

Is Whiplash a Serious Injury

Car accidents can, and often do, result in a whiplash injury. While many people feel that whiplash is a minor injury, or will resolve on its own, that is not always the case. Here is why whiplash can be much more than a simple sore neck and why early treatment can be the key to healing well.

Whiplash Basics

Whiplash is a very common injury associated with auto accidents. The car accident itself does not have to be severe and it can impact everyone riding in the vehicle at the time of the collision. Whiplash happens when a car stops or turns suddenly, which causes the neck to turn or jerk (often the head moves in a rapid back-and-forth motion) which can cause injuries to the muscles and tendons in your neck.

Symptoms of whiplash include:

  • Neck pain
  • Neck stiffness
  • Worsening of pain with neck movement
  • Loss of range of motion in the neck
  • Headaches, commonly starting at the base of the skull
  • Pain or tenderness in shoulder, upper back or arms
  • Tingling or numbness in the arms
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness

In some cases, patients experience more severe symptoms as a result of a whiplash injury to the neck which includes:

  • Blurry vision
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Irritability
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Memory problems
  • Depression

That being said, not everyone experiences the same symptoms. The problem with whiplash type injuries are that these types of injuries are not easy to tell just based on your symptoms.  You need a medical evaluation right away by a physician to help diagnose what is going on with your spine.

How Treatment Can Help

Even if you are only suffering from a mild headache or minor neck stiffness after your car accident, it’s crucial to seek treatment from a qualified medical professional right away. For starters, what may seem like minor whiplash pain can develop into severe pain within a few days, so determining the extent of your injury — and treating it right away —  can help prevent it from continuing to get worse and harder to treat.

Recovery time from a whiplash injury does vary according to its severity. Some cases can resolve in just a few days, while others can take longer. Treatment can range from ice and anti-inflammatory medication to neck braces and physical therapy, but with a proper treatment plan, you can recover from a whiplash injury.

Reach Out and Seek Help

Whiplash can impact your life in ways far beyond your stiff, sore neck would indicate in the early days after your injury. Whiplash from an auto accident can get worse if not treated, so it is vital to be evaluated by a medical professional as soon as you can.  It can help ease your pain and prevent long-term problems. Our team can look at your injury and devise a treatment plan exclusively for you to get you well on the road to recovery.

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