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One of the injuries most often treated by our Pain Care Associates chiropractor is whiplash. Following a whiplash injury many people including medical professionals have trouble determining whether the best course of treatment is chiropractic adjustment or physical therapy. At Pain Care Associates in Little Rock and Benton we take the guesswork out of your treatment plan by having both options available at our Little Rock and Benton pain management clinic. Working with both chiropractors and licensed physical therapists you can rest assured, and pain free, that you will be receiving the best treatment possible for your unique case. Whiplash can cause both acute pain (shorter term pain) and long term pain. However, if you get whiplash treated as soon as possible after the accident, the chances of complete pain relief and a full recovery are very good.
A whiplash injury frequently causes a severe sprain in the neck, shoulders, and even upper back area. The ligaments and vertebrae in the neck appear to be especially vulnerable to whiplash damage.
The muscles and tendons in the neck and upper back area also experience tremendous strain with whiplash. Even the cervical discs can be damaged during whiplash, possibly tearing or rupturing.
All of these damages can combine to cause severe pain in the neck, shoulders, and upper back. Stiffness and problems with normal range of movement are also common whiplash problems. Because the head is briefly separated from the cervical spine during the moment of impact, the re-settling of the head can cause headache pain as well.
Whiplash sufferers may also experience other problems like blurry vision, dizziness, disorientation, problems with swallowing, and nausea. Less commonly, patients may experience vertigo or the sensation of ringing in the ears.
The most common whiplash symptoms don't tend to appear until some time after the actual accident impact. It may take a few hours, or it could take up to several days. It is not uncommon for a person suffering from whiplash to think they are just fine after the accident, but to find that the next morning they are in tremendous pain when they wake up.
For this reason, it is always best to have any accident injury checked out, even if you may not think there is truly an injury. Whiplash can be very deceptive because it tends to "hide" in the early time just after the accident, so being proactive is essential in proper treatment.
Whiplash can cause chronic pain that will last for months, years, or even a lifetime if it's not treated promptly. The acute pain of whiplash is something that a patient and their chiropractor will face together. Part of the healing equation is the patient's responsibility. Staying active is important, and you should always check with your chiropractor regarding a list of approved activities during whiplash treatment.
The chiropractor will typically help relieve pain by performing regular spinal adjustments. The spinal adjustments will provide balance to a spine that may be completely out of alignment following the accident.
Prescribed exercises that help with strengthening are also a frequent part of a chiropractic whiplash treatment, as are physical therapy measures like moist heat therapy, cold therapy, and Electrical Muscle Stimulation therapy.
All of the therapy types used in whiplash recovery plans are completely natural and non-invasive. The chiropractic care and physical therapy care work together to help you heal as quickly and fully as possible. For more information contact our Little Rock or Benton office at 501-223-3314.