I’ve Suffered Whiplash: Can a Chiropractor Help?

Whiplash is an incredibly common type of injury that occurs when the head and/or the neck is suddenly accelerated forward and whipped back in a sudden deceleration. As you probably know, the most common cause of whiplash is car accidents – but you might not have known just how common whiplash injuries are. Every year, there are about 3 million new cases of whiplash in the United States alone. That means roughly one in every 10 or 15 people suffer some type of whiplash injury in a given year. On a global scale, it is estimated that 1 in every 100 people suffer chronic pain due to a past whiplash injury.

That’s not even the most surprising part. Statistics consistently show that more than half of all cases of whiplash aren’t resolved. Instead, they progress into some variety of chronic pain or stiffness. Car accidents aren’t the only cause of whiplash, either. It’s also fairly common to sustain a whiplash injury at work, or while playing sports. Any situation where the neck may be subject to sudden movements could potentially turn into a whiplash injury.

Because so many whiplash injuries linger for a long time after the initial accident, people are often left looking for answers. Is there a way to safely and permanently treat whiplash injuries, or is it something that people “just have to live with”?

In most cases, there is no “quick fix” for whiplash injuries. Effective treatment involves a number of therapeutic and self-care techniques. Stretching, hot and cold therapy, physical therapy, and analgesic pain relievers are often part of a whiplash treatment program.

Chiropractic care is another option – and in fact, this is often the best chance people have for lasting relief from their whiplash injuries. A doctor of chiropractic uses special adjustments to the spine (especially the cervical spine, in the case of a whiplash injuries) to correct imbalances and restore the spine to its proper alignment.

In other words, the answer to our question is yes – chiropractic treatment can and does routinely help sufferers of whiplash injuries to resolve their symptoms and restore the neck and spine to proper alignment. However, it’s important to be aware that chiropractic treatment is not a “silver bullet” in terms of whiplash treatment. It may be the most effective option – and it has the added advantages of being a surgery-free and drug-free treatment option – but seeing results may take some time and effort.

A qualified and reputable chiropractor does not use a “one size fits all” approach to whiplash injuries. Instead, each patient is carefully assessed, with the result of a custom treatment plan that addresses the specific symptoms and injuries sustained by the patient. Whiplash is a very common type of injury, but no two cases are exactly the same. The chiropractor’s job is to determine exactly what kind of adjustments will be most beneficial to the patient, resolving the symptoms quickly and thoroughly. Lifestyle and ergonomic adjustments may also have to be made over the long term, but it’s important for sufferers of this very common injury to know that help is out there, and that qualified chiropractors can help.