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7 Reasons Why Neck Pain Needs Immediate Attention After a Crash

Whiplash is the most common neck injury to occur after a car crash. This is because while the rest of your body is more protected with seat belts and airbags, there’s not much stopping your head from jerking back and forth from a heavy impact. The symptoms may not show right away, but there are many problems that can arise if not treated immediately. The caring professionals at Impact Medical Miami are here to warn you of the dangers of leaving whiplash undiagnosed and untreated.

Chronic Pain and Headaches

Withstanding an accident can already be a painful experience at the moment. However, your body can continue to feel chronic pain over an extended period if your injuries aren’t treated right away. This type of discomfort is usually described as uncontrollable muscle spasms, severe shooting pains, and debilitating weakness.

Aside from chronic pain, you can also suffer from chronic headaches. These types of headaches are more severe as they can be felt from the neck all the way to the forehead, and it usually comes in radiating waves of pain.

Neurological Damage

Since the neck is an extension of your spinal cord, whiplash can lead to spinal misalignment. The nerves that carry signals to your brain are housed in the vertebrae and so a misaligned spine can lead to neurological damage. There are two types of nerve damage that can result from an accident:

Nerve root irritation stems from hernias caused by direct pressure on the discs and can be identified by the swelling and inflammation that follows.

Referred pain can happen after structural damage in the neck or ligaments and causes confusion in the signals being sent to the brain regarding where the pain is actually coming from.

Traumatic Brain Injury

Since most neck injuries involve the spine which in turn affects the nerves, it’s no surprise that untreated whiplash can also lead to traumatic brain injury. Symptoms include:

Difficulty communicating

High sound sensitivity

Trouble Sleeping

Lower IQ

Slower than usual reaction time

Degenerative Disc Disease

Herniated discs and a misaligned spinal cord fall under degenerative disc disease. If left untreated, the structure of your spine can deteriorate thus making you more prone to stiffness, instability, and even bone fractures. Such fractures are medically known as osteoporosis which is common in older individuals.

Cervicogenic Dizziness

More commonly known as vertigo, cervicogenic dizziness is another nerve-related issue that can occur after a car crash. You’ll notice debilitating dizziness and instability which makes it nearly impossible to retain your balance even when standing completely still. As you might expect, the frequent and intense motions can induce nausea.

Thoracic Outlet Syndrome

When the blood vessels between your neck and shoulders become compressed, it can cause thoracic outlet syndrome. You’ll experience radiating pain in the affected area as well as numbness that can track all the way down to your fingers making it difficult to perform your daily routines.

Loss of Mobility

This problem may seem less severe compared to some of the others that have been mentioned but it can still cause a damper on your daily activities. Some people don’t realize just how much and how often you turn your head until you begin to suffer from a lack of mobility in the neck. If left alone, this debilitating stiffness can follow you throughout the rest of your life.

Get Immediate Treatment!

As you can see, there are many chronic problems that can develop into permanent symptoms if you don’t seek treatment immediately after a car crash. If you suspect that you might have whiplash, don’t hesitate! Physical therapy and chiropractic care are both proven methods of relieving symptoms before they exacerbate in a way that’s easy on your body.

At Impact Medical Miami we’re certified to give you personalized treatment plans specifically for car crash injuries. Make an appointment with us today by calling 786-789-3171!