Whiplash is a condition that involves injury to the neck. It is also called neck sprain or neck strain. What happens is that an injury occurs on one or more structures of the neck. This will result in generalized pain and will stay that way for a few weeks.
Though the first aid and treatment of whiplash is the same, neck strain and neck strain are two different injuries. Neck strain is a result of sudden movements or actions on your head. The sudden force will stretch and tears the muscles and tendons in your neck. Usually, people who can get neck strain can happen to athletes or any sportsman that are engaged in contact sports. Neck sprain on the other hands is the tearing of the ligaments and the connective tissues that connect the bones to each other. However, both types can still cause pain and paralysis in worse cases. With proper treatment, whiplash can be treated if not managed to relieve symptoms.
The signs and symptoms of whiplash include the following:
- There is a pain in everything movement the neck makes. The muscles may feel hard or knotted. Because of pain, there is a reduced range of motion.
- When the head is rocked from side to side or backward and forward there is a searing pain
- It may be painful when looking over each shoulder
- There is tenderness in the neck
- Headaches are also common and it usually begins at the base of the skull that will radiate into the forehead.
Often times, the pain in the neck can start immediately after an incident, however, there are also instances that it can start hours or days before the neck begins to hurt.
The treatment for whiplash is easily attainable and can be done at home.
- Application of Cold or Ice into the neck. This action alone will decrease the swelling and pain. By applying a cold compress to the neck for 15 minutes every 3 to 4 hours for the next 2- 3 days it can greatly decrease swelling.
- Painkillers and other drugs can also be taken to control the pain and reduce inflammation.
- It is recommended to wear a neck brace or collar to help in supporting the head and of course, it is recommended by your doctor. But neck braces are not advisable for long-term use since this will affect the muscles on the neck.
The recovery time of whiplash will depend on how severe the injury was.
If you think you are suffering from Whiplash you should seek medical assistance. You may also be entitled to Social Security Disability Benefits. The SSA considered Whiplash as a medical condition that would make you eligible for SSDI and SSI. Social Security Administration (SSA) maintains a “Listing of Medical Impairments” (known as the blue book) that automatically qualify you for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI).