Whenever your neck is thrown backward and forward in a violent fashion, it could get injured, this is called a whiplash. Several things are affected here including ligaments, tendons, muscles and in worst cases nerves and spinal joints. This condition is often a consequence of rear-end collision when driving or from or you can be hit in sports. With a whiplash, you will experience neck pain and/ or inflammation. Interfered neck motion, weakened neck muscles, headaches and dizziness.
Thus, what should you do in case you experience such?
See your doctor first
After whiplash, the first thing you should do is to see the family doctor. Whiplash can be complicated with its signs manifesting after a week or so and that is why you should not just wait for the pain, it could be delusional and by the time the doctor is away, the damage is already done. The doctor should be able to carry out some examination including X-ray to confirm the extent of the injury and if there are any fractures or dislocations. If you have trouble in holding up your head, then the doctor will recommend a neck support collar.
Ensure that your neck is stable
If you still feel unstable even with the aid of your doctor, then you may need a second opinion from an orthopedist who would take more x-rays including MRI or a CT scan of your neck. MRI is able to test soft tissues like spinal cord torn ligaments or herniated discs. Before you start the physiotherapy, your doctor must ascertain that your neck is stable to stand the stretches and the exercise involved in the process.
Control the pain and inflammation
Anti-inflammatories like ibuprofen can be used for short-term pain relief. Then you can later get a recommendation for a stronger painkiller. Reducing inflammation and pain is necessary before the physio exercises.
Get a referral to a physiotherapist
After your doctor does everything at their disposal, and they give you a go ahead, then a physiotherapist comes handy. The therapist does an assessment of the stability of your neck and then draws a recovery plan with exercises and stretches aimed at strengthening the neck. With a prescription from your doctor, private health insurance. The whiplash treatment physiotherapy specialist would use TENS (Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation) unit on your shoulders, they’ll stimulate, contract and strengthen your neck muscle while strengthening the muscles with an electronic muscle stimulation device.
Whiplash can be so tormenting if not handled with care. That is why you must seek guidance from your doctor who would then refer you to the physiotherapist.