Chiropractic & Whiplash

Chiropractic & Whiplash Injuries

Chiropractic care is useful for helping to recover from Whiplash type injuries. When you have an accident that causes excessive flexion and extension of the neck it can damage the ligaments, muscles and joints. In addition the nerves can be overstretched that leave the neck and this can lead to arm pain, numbness and even blurred vision.

Chiropractic treatment of whiplash injuries is aimed at firstly reducing pain and inflammation and then at restoring movement to stiff joints and reducing scarring in the muscles. Stimulation of the deeper muscles of the neck helps them to function correctly so that they can control movement without pain. When you have an jury these deep muscles can go into a shocked state where they do not contract properly either too much or too little and they register pain instead of movement.

Chiropractic adjustments can be specifically directed either mechanically or by hand to stimulate these muscles and improve function. When combined with acupuncture and active rehabilitation together we can get the nervous system working correctly and help to reduce your chances of long term symptoms.

Did you know many whiplash injuries lead to the start of a degenerative process of the mid-neck if left unattended. It is suggested that an injury of moderate force will age your cervical spine by at least 10 years if it is not properly rehabilitated.

Whiplash Injury and Ongoing Symptoms

A study by Berglund et al. in 2000 looked at the relationship between whiplash injury and ongoing symptoms. They concluded that those subjects that reported neck pain following an injury were 2.7x more likely to report neck pain up to and often 7 years after the original injury. In 2010 Nolet PS et al re-examined this and found evidence that a past neck injury in a motor vehicle collision may have a significant role in the development of future episodes of pain and disability.

The consequences of a neck injury in a motor vehicle collision can have long lasting effects and predispose individuals to experience recurrent episodes of neck pain.

  • This study tested the association between a lifetime history of neck injury in a motor vehicle collision and the development of troublesome neck pain in a cohort from the general population
  • Those who report a history of a neck injury in a motor vehicle collision are twice as likely to experience a future episode of troublesome neck pain
  • The results add support to the hypothesis that a lifetime history of neck trauma may predispose individuals to suffer from future episodes of neck pain and disability

A systematic review of chiropractic care for whiplash in 2010 by Shaw et al recognized that chiropractic care improves pain and range of motion following injury and made several recommendations for care and future research. We welcome this review and use it as our guide to effectively deal and communicate on all cases for the benefit of the patients long term health.



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