Car accidents cause a lot of trauma and pain to the body. Most commonly, people involved in car accidents injure their necks because of the increased flexibility and vulnerability of the neck. The neck pain can begin immediately after the accident, or it can develop gradually over hours or days after the accident occurred. However, early management of the condition is vital to prevent severe complications. Therefore, if you are involved in any accident, immediately check for any trauma to the neck and contact us to book a consultation.
Common Types of Neck Injuries
There are several common neck injuries you should be on the lookout for in case of any car accident. These injuries have different symptoms and different risk levels. They include:
A neck fracture is one of the most severe injuries resulting from an accident. Each person has a total of seven cervical vertebrae. When one or more cervical neck vertebrae crack or break, immediate medical attention is required. When not addressed promptly, neck fractures can damage the spinal cord nerves resulting in paralysis and even death. The symptoms of the condition include:
- Extreme pain originating from the neck
- Numbness in your legs and arms
- Swelling in the neck
A simple break of the cervical vertebrae can be fixed by wearing a neck brace for about two months. In contrast, numerous and complex breaks of the cervical vertebrae may require surgery in addition to a neck brace and can involve an extensive recovery period.
A herniated disc occurs when the soft spinal cord disc is displaced after a severe impact. The disc raptures the outer wall of the spinal cord through a weak outer wall section. Depending on whether the spinal disc makes contact with the spinal nerves, herniated disk symptoms vary. The associated symptoms of this condition are:
- Numbness or tingling sensation in the neck
- Sharp pain when you move your neck, mainly felt in your shoulder and arm
However, in some cases, you may suffer from a slipped or herniated disk without any symptoms. Spinal cord x-ray images will help identify this problem.
Whiplash occurs when the neck is forcefully moved back and forth, resulting in neck injury. In addition to car accidents, mostly rear-end car accidents, whiplash can be caused by slip and fall types of injury. The symptoms of whiplash are:
- Neck and shoulder pain (severe cases)
- Disordered sleep
- Difficulty focusing
With proper treatment, which includes medication and exercise, whiplash can be cured within a couple of weeks for most people. However, other long-term neck problems can persist, such as chronic pain.
Soft Tissue Damage
The neck is made up of soft tissue, which is prone to injury in case of accidents. Incurring soft tissue damage means your ligaments, muscles and tendons are torn, sprained or stretched excessively. Soft tissue damage in the neck is sued synonymously with neck strain and neck sprain. There is a wide range of symptoms for this condition, including:
- Neck pain that worsens with any movement
- Stiff neck, which results in decreased range of motion
- Headache that originates from the back of the head
- Upper shoulder pain
- Muscle spasms
- Irritability and discomfort sleeping
Depending on the severity of the soft tissue damage, various treatment options exist. Simply applying ice to the affected area can resolve the problem for a less severe injury. However, more severe damage requires an immediate doctor trip for pain medication and problem management.
What Treatment Do Chiropractors Offer for Neck Injuries Resulting from Car Accidents?
Chiropractors are licensed medical professionals who are qualified to treat neck injuries. In our chiropractor center, in addition to treating neck injuries resulting from car injuries, we also treat neck injuries obtained from slips and falls. Depending on the type of neck injury sustained, we offer a variety of treatment options which are listed below:
- Joint Mobilization
- Cervical Traction
- Inter-Segmental Traction
- Combo Therapy
- Therapeutic Ultrasound
- Electric Muscle Simulation
- Moist Heat
- Low-Level Laser Therapy
- Manual Therapy
- Cupping Therapy
- Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Work
- Neck and Core Strengthening Exercises
Finding the proper treatment for your neck injury can determine the success of the recovery from the injury. Our clinic offers the best treatment options for all neck injuries, as your health is our top priority. Remember, neck injuries can worsen and, in worse cases, be fatal if not addressed immediately. Therefore, if you have been involved in an accident and have observed any of the listed symptoms, contact us today to book a free consultation.