As winter approaches and the snow begins to fall, it brings with it more hazardous road conditions, and the possibility of motor vehicle accidents.
While a small fender bender might not seem that serious, it can lead to whiplash, a soft tissue injury to the neck. In fact, approximately two-thirds of people in motor vehicle accidents develop whiplash symptoms.
Whiplash is a neck sprain or strain caused by sudden extension and flexion of the neck. Symptoms vary based on severity, but can include neck pain or stiffness, back pain, dizziness & vision changes, arm pain, and difficulty sleeping due to pain. In many cases, symptoms do not appear immediately after injury, and can take up to 48 hours to appear. And while a car accident is the most common source of whiplash, it’s not the only cause. Sports injuries, falls, and work accidents can also lead to whiplash.
While each case of whiplash may vary based on symptoms and severity, treatment will also vary. Your chiropractor will first take a thorough history of the injury and your symptoms and perform a comprehensive exam of the spine. Here they will note areas of joint restriction and muscle injury, and determine the best treatment plan for you. In more severe cases, x-rays or a referral to another healthcare practitioner may be needed. Chiropractic treatment will often consist of soft tissue treatment, manipulation and mobilization, rehab and exercises, and even lifestyle modifications to help you heal.
As with any injury, it’s a good idea to be evaluated after the accident even if your symptoms appear mild. Pain is often the last symptom to arrive – often long after an injury has occurred – and can lead to a longer recovery time or other symptoms and concerns if left untreated.
And if you are in a motor vehicle accident in Manitoba, Manitoba Public Insurance may cover your chiropractic treatment! Be sure to ask about your coverage when reporting the accident, or talk to your chiropractor before your next visit.
Have more questions? We are here to help! Give our office a call at 204.505.4325.