Whiplash happens whenever you’ve had a forceful jolt to your neck. It’s a good idea to check in with your doctor if this has happened. Whiplash causes muscle spasms and limits your ability to turn your head. Physical therapy can teach you how to get started and what to expect during your recovery.
Immediately following a whiplash injury you will likely have a few minutes to a couple of days until you start feeling the pain. Regardless, it’s a good idea to check in with your doctor to rule out any structural damage. Giving your muscles a break as soon as possible is what I’d suggest. Lay down on your back with you spine in alignment and take gravity out of the situation. Get a thin ice pack and towel under the muscles for 15 minutes. Gently and very lightly massage the muscles to keep the circulation going to minimize the amount of swelling that could build up. And gentle active motion exercises that are within the range that does Not increase your pain is a must. You’ll be dealing with inflammation from the overstretch injury, tension from the muscles’ natural reaction to ‘protect’ your neck, and you don’t want to add stiffness to that list of ailments on top of it! Here’s an outline of the basic exercises to do while your neck is recovering from a whiplash injury.
Video Transcript: Whiplash
Transcript coming soon. Please enjoy the video.
This should get you started in the right direction, but please check out my full-length PT session to get all the rest of the details that will troubleshoot your symptoms and take you to a full recovery. I’ve also got an exercise checklist for you and illustrations so you can work on the exercises easily throughout the day. I hope you’ve been encouraged, and that you’ll be feeling better soon.