You’ve experienced some neck trauma that amounted to whiplash, and it’s no fun. We get it. Because whiplash is typically the result of an accident or a sudden and surprising event, it’s hard to avoid, and anyone is susceptible to it.
Whiplash has several symptoms, including:
- Pain, achiness, or soreness in the neck
- Radiating pain from the neck into the shoulders or upper back
- Blurred vision or dizziness
- A stiff neck or loss of range of motion
These symptoms can take over your day (and night) quickly, so getting them under control fast is the goal, and you want to start now. Of course, after any kind of accident that has caused you pain, you should get to your local chiropractor to ensure your body is fully functioning and out of harm’s way.
But, in the meantime, what can you do to get whiplash relief safely and naturally at home? We’re giving you five chiropractor-approved methods for whiplash pain management below. And the best part: these tips can even help contribute to the healing process.
Five Ways to Get Fast Whiplash Relief at Home
Ice the neck, shoulders, and back
In most cases, when our bodies undergo a traumatic event or accident, the soft tissues in and around the injured area become inflamed immediately. This may be due to the unnatural extension of tissues, pressures placed on the tissues due to other compromised areas, or the body’s healing response of circulation.
Icing the affected areas after an acute or spontaneous injury will help decrease swelling and inflammation that impede proper movement, flexibility, and comfort. The sooner you get ice on the injury, the better.
Apply ice for about 15 minutes every three hours for three days.
Apply heat to the neck, shoulders, and back
After the inflammation has subsided, adding heat to the treatment strategy will promote circulation that carries healthy blood, oxygen, and nutrients to the area in need. Heat also loosens the muscles and relieves tension and stiffness as relaxation is promoted.
Apply heat in combination with ice, taking turns between each, for 15 minutes every three hours.
Exercise and stretch the neck and back
Combining gentle neck strengthening exercises with neck stretches will encourage the restoration of flexibility, range of motion, and correct movement, which will help restore comfort.
Always start slowly and build up to more functional exercises, but never push yourself too far, and if the activities you’re doing prompt heightened pain, stop immediately.
Exercises and stretches to try include:
- Chin tucks
- Bending the head backward, then forward
- Turning the head from side to side
- Bending the head so the ear hovers over the shoulder
- Stand straight and pull your shoulder blades together and down
- Put your hand on your forehead and push your head into your hand without bending the neck
Massage the neck, shoulders, and back
Massaging the damaged tissues will promote circulation, which helps heal them, but it will also remove physical tension and mental stress as muscles are soothed and restored. Massage therapy is designed to engage the body’s natural rehabilitative properties and get you comfortable as safely and quickly as possible.
Rest the neck
Rest in the form of taking a break from activities that strain the neck tissues and rest in the form of sleep are both vital to healing whiplash. Even as you sit watching a movie on your sofa, your neck generally supports you.
Try a U-shaped pillow or create your own cervical spine (neck) support to promote proper alignment as you remove pressure from the neck’s usual duties. And don’t forget the importance of getting good quality sleep. Sleep is when the body has to heal, restore, recover, and rejuvenate. However, sleep also significantly affects our mental and emotional well-being and stress levels. Be sure to create a pleasant sleeping space for yourself at all times, especially while injured.
Visit Our Bay City Chiropractor for Lasting Whiplash Relief
You may have noticed that many tips above involve the neck, shoulders, and back. That’s because the musculoskeletal system is connected, and when one area becomes injured, others can too.
Working with a chiropractor for whiplash offers several benefits for the whole body. Whether it’s compensation or undue pressure, our Bay City whiplash chiropractor will provide a comprehensive physical exam to find all affected areas after your whiplash injury.
Unfortunately, numerous conditions may arise after an accident, so knowing how to treat the body as a whole is essential to a fast, effective healing process.
The care we offer our whiplash patients includes:
Our chiropractic treatments will often be combined with guidance regarding exercise, posture, sleeping position, and more for our whiplash patients. Like you, we want you healed and moving safely as soon as possible.
Contact our Bay City chiropractic clinic for successful whiplash treatment today.