Whiplash due to auto collisions is a worldwide silent epidemic costing the U.S. alone billions of dollars annually. People involved in auto collisions often times experience symptoms of whiplash as a very brief but violent “whipping” action of their head and neck. Long term outcome studies have shown an unfavorable prognosis, especially without proper treatment early on. Whiplash has been found to have long-term negative effects on the health of the spine such as, arthritis, stenosis, and disc herniation. With early intervention and the right kind of treatment these long term damages can be lessened.
Whiplash occurs instantaneously, however the symptoms may not manifest themselves for days, weeks, or months following a car accident. So even if you don’t feel pain right away following a car accident, it is advisable to get checked out by an experienced auto collision injury doctor.
How to Relieve Severe Neck Pain
Massage should be considered a staple procedure in any well rounded treatment plan for whiplash injuries. Following whiplash there will no doubt be muscle spasms in the neck, upper back and shoulders, and massage is one of the few procedures that specifically addresses the muscle spasms. A massage therapist trained in treating whiplash injuries is important for long term recovery and the best possible outcome. There are several other benefits of massage in whiplash injuries such as, better range of motion, reduced scar tissue and adhesion formation, increase circulation to the sites of injury, and lymphatic drainage. It is advisable to search out a clinic that has qualified doctors and massage therapists working side by side. The massage therapist will be much more skilled and trained on treating whiplash injuries with a multitude of deep tissue techniques.
5 symptoms of whiplash that would improve with massage therapy:
- Tenderness or pain along the back of the neck, front of the neck, or shoulder region
If you palpate your neck and trapezius regions and notice some tenderness and soreness, you are most likely suffering from a whiplash injury and your neck and upper back muscles are probably in spasm.
- Neck stiffness and tightness
If you are noticing some new neck tightness and stiffness in the morning upon getting out of bed or towards the end of a work day, you are most likely suffering from a whiplash injury and the neck and upper back muscles are in spasm.
After neck pain, headaches are the most prevalent complaint among those suffering from whiplash injury, affecting more than 80% of all auto collision victims. If you are experiencing a new onset of headaches, especially in the back of the head, following a car accident, your neck muscles are most likely in spasm as a result of a car accident. Muscle spasms of the neck can be the primary problem, or secondary due to a deeper problem in the spine. If the spasms are chronic, it is more likely they are due to a deeper structure like the facet joints of the spine or the discs. Treating those problems along with the muscle spasms will significantly improve the pain and headaches.
- Difficulty flexing, extending or rotating the head
In patients that are experience a loss of range of motion following a car accident, it is probable that a whiplash injury has occurred. When the ligaments, spinal joint capsules, nerves and spinal discs get injured, muscles splint, guard and go into spasm due to the pain the damage is causing. This will result in limited and painful range of motion and ultimately impact one’s quality of life. .
- Poor sleep and/or fatigue
It is not uncommon for car accident victims suffering from whiplash to be experiencing poor sleep and new onset of fatigue throughout the day. In an effort to get comfortable often times a person will toss and turn trying to find a comfortable position. Unfortunately poor rest ensues and then fatigue during the day sets in. In addition, when your body is working overtime trying to repair any damage arising out of a whiplash injury, a person will often times experience new onset of fatigue during the day.
If you’d like to learn more about how massage can help you with whiplash, please give our clinic a call or text at (360) 573-1933. Our doctors have advanced training in whiplash as well as brain traumatology. It is one of our specialties and we get great results. Experienced whiplash massage therapists are on site and ready to help.