Can A Physical Therapist Help With Whiplash?

In the event of a car accident, you may be wondering if a physical therapist can help with whiplash. Physical therapists are trained to use hands-on techniques that can relieve pain and restore function. They also have many other treatments such as heat or ice therapy, electrical stimulation, exercise rehabilitation programs, and more. So don’t hesitate to seek out professional care after an accident!

What is a Whiplash?

Whiplash is a non-specific term to describe neck pain after car accidents. It can also refer to any other type of injury that causes the neck and head area, such as when you fall or move your head in an awkward way. When this happens, it’s common for these symptoms to appear:

  • Blurred vision
  • Fatigue
  • Neck pain and stiffness
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Numbness in the arms

Stiffness, Numbness, and Headaches

This is because whiplash may cause injuries inside the cervical vertebrae in addition to outside areas where there are muscles spasms or tears. 

Fatigue and Inability To Sleep

This can lead to an immense number of problems including aches in various parts of your body, impaired decision-making abilities, and concentration levels. These symptoms are all common with whiplash victims who have been experiencing chronic insomnia for months on end.

What Causes Whiplash?

Whiplash can be caused by car accidents, falls, or any other type of event in which the neck and head are injured. The following also causes whiplash:

  • Horseback Riding
  • Cycling Accidents
  • A blow to the head with a blunt object
  • Contact Sport Accidents
  • Physical Abuse

How Is Whiplash Diagnosed?

When you experience whiplash, a doctor will perform an examination to determine the source of your pain and discomfort. They’ll also measure how much range of motion is possible in different parts of your body. A physical therapist may then be able to diagnose which muscles are affected by treating them with exercises like neck stretches or shoulder rotations for more flexibility.

Following that, your therapist may do additional assessments using image testing to find out the causes of whiplash. X-rays and CT scans are examples of possible tests that can be done for this purpose. If it is established through imaging results that you have whiplash, a physical therapy plan will be devised with exercises specific to healing from whiplash injuries in order to help heal them properly. A proper diagnosis will assure patients that they experience the following:

  • Reduce pain and discomfort
  • Receive a medically approved treatment
  • Find out the other sources of your whiplash 

Physical Therapy For Whiplash: What To Expect From Treatment?

The physical therapy treatment plan will be designed specifically with you based on what works best for you – so keep an open mind! The goal is generally not just to rest but to improve function and help you heal. Some techniques that physical therapists may use are:

  • Heat or ice therapy
  • Massage
  • Electrical stimulation (small currents passed through the skin)
  • Exercise rehabilitation programs to restore range of motion, strength, endurance, coordination, and balance. There will also be instructions on proper lifting techniques for car safety!

The treatment for whiplash is varied and may be dependent on the severity of symptoms that you experience. A physical therapist will assess your current condition, educate you about how to avoid future problems, and teach hands-on exercises to help regain mobility and reduce pain. If you are experiencing any signs or symptoms of whiplash injury such as dizziness, headaches, neck stiffness/pain – please call us so we can discuss a plan of care with you today!

Are You Looking for Relief From an Accident Injury?

If you’ve been injured in a car accident, physical therapy can help you find relief!  We pride ourselves on offering the best possible physical therapy available and going above and beyond for our patients. Our highly experienced physical therapist will work with you to improve your function and relieve your pain. Recovery from car injury is not always an easy process, but it does get better with the help of physical therapy. If you’re near San Jose and have been injured as a result of another driver’s negligence or recklessness, contact Pace Physical Therapy to find out how we can accelerate your recovery today! Recovery from injuries sustained during a traffic accident isn’t something that just happens on its own – if you want assistance getting back into shape after being involved in one yourself, don’t hesitate any longer; call our office right now for more information about what we offer. Contact us today to schedule your appointment!