Submitted by: Frank Denber

Whiplash is a common injury from car accidents, and can even occur after minor fender benders. It’s most common if you are rear-ended.

What happens is that your head does not react to the impact at quite the same speed as your body. Your head ends up jerking forward or backward. Although it’s most often associated with an auto accident, whiplash can also be caused when playing contact sports or being punched or shaken. In car accidents, passengers tend to be affected worse than drivers, as the driver is paying more attention and can often (but not always) brace for the impact. (This is also why rear end crashes cause more whiplash). Women are more vulnerable than men, simply because of their smaller size.

Whiplash actually is a strain to the neck. The soft tissues that hold the cervical vertebrae together are damaged. The symptoms include decreased range of motion and a feeling of tightness or tension in the muscles of the neck. You might also experience pain when rocking your head in any direction or when looking over your shoulder.

Your neck may be tender and many patients experience headaches that appear to start at the base of the skull. It can even cause pain or tingling in the hands and arms, pain in the jaw, fatigue, and insomnia. Symptoms, however, tend not to appear right away. In fact, whiplash symptoms can show up weeks or even months after the initial impact.


Chiropractic adjustment can help treat whiplash symptoms by re-aligning the neck. This is part of the program that may include wearing a cervical collar to provide temporary support to the neck, muscle relaxants, exercises and stretches and massage. This can provide relief from pain and help you return to normal life. Prolonged rest is not recommended for whiplash accidents, but rather gentle exercise, making pain relief particularly important for this kind of injury.

Other than avoiding cars (not feasible for most of the people), there are a number of things you can do to prevent whiplash injury or make it less severe. The most important is to make sure that your head restraint is adjusted properly. The top of the head restraint should be level with the top of your head or slightly above, and no more than two inches from the back of your head when sitting normally.

If you engage in contact sports, you should make sure you do exercises and stretches that are designed to strengthen your neck muscles. If you have been in an accident, then seek medical care if you have neck pain, especially if it radiates down the arms, or is accompanied by headaches, numbness, visual changes or nausea. These can indicate a concussion, which can be caused by the same impact as whiplash.

Contacting your local Laguna Hills chiropractic office immediately after the accident can help ensure your road to recovery is accelerated and not prolonged. Getting back to normal will take time, but your chiropractor will provide advice and recommendations that will help you get there sooner rather than later.

About the Author: A chiropractor can help free you from your permanent joint or muscle pain, whether it is muscular damage or skeletal misalignment. Get the contact details for your local

Laguna Hills chiropractic

clinic at


Permanent Link: }

Posted in Public Relations