As well as road accidents, whiplash may also be caused by:
- a sudden blow to the head – for example, during contact sports such as boxing or rugby
- a slip or fall where the head is suddenly and violently jolted backwards
- being struck on the head by a heavy or solid object.
What are the effects/symptoms of Whiplash?
Most people report pain in the back of the neck which is worse on movement. Pain may radiate up to the head, across to the shoulders, arms or between the shoulder blades. Headaches are typically at the back of the head and spread forwards over the head.
Other, less common symptoms can be:
- Disturbances of eyesight
- Problems with balance and dizziness
- Weakness and heaviness in the arms
- Pins and needles on the inner sides of the hands
- Hoarseness and difficulty swallowing and eating
- Disturbances of hearing
Additionally, some bruising may occur in the seatbelt area. If rotation or turning of the neck is involved, then other structures in the neck may be affected, such as the nerves which pass between the vertebrae and out to the arm.
Physiotherapy for Whiplash
Our specialised physiotherapists at Core Physio are experienced in dealing with whiplash and will use a variety of techniques to alleviate your pain and return you to full levels of activity. It is important to start treatment early to speed up recovery.
Your physiotherapist will initially assess your physical symptoms following your accident and ensure treatment is tailored to these findings.
Treatments used may include:
- Use of ice to decrease inflammation
- Advice on painkillers and anti-inflammatories
- Active and passive range of movement exercises to promote healing and relieve pain and stiffness
- Progressive exercises (including stretches, strengthening and conditioning)
- Soft tissue massage to promote recovery
- Joint mobilisation
- Postural alignment training
- Detailed reports for insurance companies if necessary
Your personalised rehabilitation program is normally between 4 and 8 weeks in length depending on your needs.
Core Physio stress the importance of proper care after injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident and encourage each patient to follow their instructions closely, following through with every component of the program, to ensure the best possible recovery.