Whiplash Complications, Treatment and Recovery

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Whiplash Complications, Treatment and Recovery

Anyone who has had a whiplash will know how painful your neck can be even after a crash at low speed. The jolting motion of the car during a crash can lead to many whiplash complications including damage of the muscles and ligaments of the neck. These injuries, if left untreated, can lead to a variety of problems such as chronic neck pain, pain into the arm and hand, headaches and jaw pain.

Whiplash Complications: Commonly Injured Muscles

The Scalenes

whiplash complications the scalenes

Image source: TeachMe Anatomy

One muscle group that is especially prone to complications in a whiplash injury are the scalenes. The scalenes are an important neck muscle which is comprised of three parts; the anterior, the middle, and the posterior. In the case of whiplash, the scalenes are often stretched and strained by the jolting motion of the car which can cause them to become very tight and facilitated. If this happens you will often end up with very stiff and restricted neck motion.

The Brachial Plexus

whiplash complications brachial plexus

Image source: TeachMe Anatomy

The brachial plexus is a network of nerves which passes through an opening between the anterior and middle scalenes. If the scalenes are injured, the brachial plexus is subject to dysfunction. Because the brachial plexus passes through scalenes, the extra pressure on the brachial plexus can result in Thoracic Outlet Syndrome. This can cause complications in the shoulder, arm and hand, including:

  • Weakness/loss of strength
  • Numbness or tingling
  • Loss of sensation
  • Loss of movement
  • Pain

Whiplash Recovery

Whiplash Complications

If you have suffered from the above whiplash complications, it is important to get cleared by the paramedics or a doctor after the accident. If neck pain or any other symptoms persist for a prolonged period of time after the car crash, it is important to start getting some treatment. Leaving a bad whiplash injury without treating it can lead to scar tissue to build up in the muscles and ligaments of the cervical spine which can create long term issues.

Whiplash Treatment

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The recommended treatment after a car crash can include physio, remedial massage or chiropractic. Your practitioner will work on helping to release the muscle spasm, reduce inflammation in the neck and give you some strengthening work to help the stabilising muscles of your neck be able to support your spine.

Are You Experiencing Whiplash Complications? Contact Dr Miki

If you have had a whiplash recently or in the past and believe it is impacting you now, I would love to help! I have experience helping people overcome whiplash injuries so feel free to make a booking online and come in for a chiropractic appointment at our central Brisbane CBD location.

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