Auto Injury and Whiplash

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Auto Injury And Whiplash – The Basics

There you are, waiting for the traffic light to change, when a vehicle crashes into the rear of your car out of nowhere. You hear the crash and the sound of breaking glass as your head and neck jolt in a back-and-forth direction. If this has occurred to you, you possibly have Whiplash.
Whiplash is a neck injury due to rapid back-and-forth neck movements. It leads to the stretching and twisting of the muscles and tendons in the neck and results in swelling and stiffening of the neck. The pain is often excruciating and can lead to headaches, fatigue, and sleeplessness.
Most individuals with Whiplash recover within a few weeks by following a proper treatment plan that comprises pain medications and physical therapy. However, some individuals suffer from chronic neck pain and other long-lasting complications.

Symptoms of Whiplash Injury

When you experience a whiplash injury, symptoms typically appear within 24 hours after the accident. Sometimes, symptoms may appear after a few days. They can last for some weeks./p>

When you experience a whiplash injury, symptoms may include the following:

Neck pain
Stiffness and restricted neck movements
Tenderness or pain in the upper limb
Tingling or numbness
Headache, dizziness, and blurred vision
Ringing in the ears
Sleep disturbances
Fatigue and Irritability
Concentration problems

Causes of Whiplash Injury

While a rear-end auto accident is the most common cause of a whiplash injury, it may also result from: Physical abuse Contact sports Head Injury (Head blows and sudden head jerks) Activities like horse riding Risk Factors of Whiplash Injury The following are the risk factors of Whiplash Having experienced Whiplash before Age Existing pain in the lower back or neck High-speed Injury

Treatment of Whiplash Injury

The good news is that sometimes whiplash can heal without treatment. However, in other cases, it needs a doctor’s attention and a physiotherapist’s help. The treatment options for whiplash injury include the following:

  • Old age
  • Rest for a while
  • Applying cold or hot packs to the injured areas
  • Over-the-counter pain medications. Such as acetaminophen (Tylenol, others) and ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) to relieve pain.
  • Prescription medications to relieve pain for severe injuries, like opioids and Muscle relaxants
  • Injections. An injection of numbing medicines like lidocaine (xylocaine) and cervical epidural steroid injections to control inflammation.
  • Exercise and physical therapy to restore normal functioning and movement of the neck and its muscles
  • Use of Foam collars

When to See a Doctor?

See your doctor if your neck pain is worsening and does not respond to OTC pain medications. You also need to consult your healthcare provider if you experience numbness, loss of strength in your arms or hands, or shooting pain down your arms from your shoulder. These are signs to seek immediate medical attention.


Whiplash is a neck injury caused by rapid, to-and-fro neck movements. One of the causes is car accidents; others are physical assault, falls, or injuries due to sports. Treatment options include painkillers, physiotherapy, and moderate exercises. Most individuals recover from Whiplash within a few days and weeks, while some may develop chronic pain or a restricted range of motion that continues for years. If you think you may have a whiplash injury check with a doctor who can provide guidance and proper treatment.