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Anatomy of Whiplash Injury

Neck strain is often just called whiplash. man holding neck in painAlthough it’s usually associated with car accidents, any impact or blow that causes your head to jerk forward or backward can cause neck strain. The sudden force stretches and tears the muscles and tendons in your neck, and can cause minor dislocations and soft tissue swelling and inflammation.

Neck strain afflicts many amateur and professional athletes. People who play contact sports like football are especially prone to neck strain. Neck strains are often confused with neck sprains. They’re a bit different. Neck strains are caused by damage to the muscle or the tendons, bands of tissue that connect muscles to bones. Neck sprains are caused by tearing of the ligaments, the tissues that connect the bones to each other. However, the differences between these strains and sprains probably won’t mean much to you. The causes, symptoms, and treatment of neck sprains and neck strains are quite similar.

What Are the Symptoms of Whiplash?

The pain of whiplash is often hard to ignore. The symptoms may include:

  • Pain, decreased range of motion, and tightness in the neck. The muscles may feel hard or knotted.
  • Pain when rocking your head from side to side or backward and forward.
  • Pain or stiffness when moving your head or looking over your shoulder.
  • Soft tissue tenderness.
  • Headaches at the base of the skull that radiate towards the forehead.

Sometimes, the pain of a neck strain is immediate. In other cases, it can take several hours or days before your neck begins to hurt. To diagnose neck strain we will give you a thorough examination. You may also need X-rays, CT (computed tomography) scans, and other tests, to rule out other problems.

We can help you

At our practice the first consideration for every new patient is to relieve their pain first and foremost, however an acurate diagnosis must be reached. You will be examined using the latest diagnostic soft ware designed to measure your neck movement to determine the extent of injury. Specific muscle tests (applied kinesiology), will determine nerve damage or impingement , and imaging (x ray, scans) will be done as deemed necessary. Invariably treatment, to give relief from pain is commenced on your first visit. Rehab plan may include remedial massage to assist with healing.
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Whiplash Noosa