Whiplash is the term used for an injury to the neck that occurs when the head is unexpectedly snapped forward and then backward. Many cases of whiplash are the result of being in a car accident, but it can also be caused due to sports injuries or other traumas to the head and neck. Luckily, for most people whiplash is not a serious injury and the neck pain will subside overtime. But whiplash can be painful, and it may impede on the range of motion in your neck, and effect every day activities while you are recovering. Use the following tips to treat whiplash:
Rotate Heat and Ice
If you are suffering from whiplash, your neck probably feels sore and stiff. Moving your head and neck may be painful, but you can help soothe the discomfort by using a heating pad or ice on the area. For best results, you can rotate heat and ice throughout the day to ease soreness.
For many people with whiplash, medicine that can be purchased in a drugstore, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, can help manage any pain associated with the injury. If you have a severe case of whiplash, your doctor may prescribe you a stronger pain medication to prevent you from experiencing extreme pain.
Depending on the extent of your whiplash, your doctor may recommend wearing a neck collar that supports your head and spine. These type of collars should not be worn around the clock, as immobilizing the neck for long periods of time can cause muscle stiffness and impede recovery. But they can be useful to wear if you are experiencing extreme pain, or if you are having trouble sleeping due to discomfort.
A stiff, sore neck can make sleeping very difficult. If your whiplash injury is keeping you from a good night of rest, muscle relaxers may help. This type of medication can be prescribed by your doctor; there are some side effects to taking muscle relaxers, so do not take a dose if you have to drive or if you have consumed alcohol.
Some people suffering from whiplash find that chiropractic adjustments help with the neck pain that they are experiencing. A licensed chiropractor is trained in adjusting and manipulating joints and bones; when you suffer from whiplash it is not uncommon for the upper spinal column to become misaligned due to trauma- a professional chiropractic treatment can help realign your spine and assist in your recovery.