Everything You Need to Know About Whiplash

April 04, 2023

whiplash from Seattle auto injuryMany of you have likely heard of whiplash and know it’s a condition related to neck pain, but that’s generally as far as the knowledge goes. For most, whiplash isn’t something considered often unless it’s affecting you. 

We’re here to tell you that understanding more about whiplash can help you naturally treat it and could even help you prevent it altogether. 


This post discusses:

• What whiplash is and what happens to the body and neck when it occurs

• Symptoms of whiplash

• Safe, organic ways to help heal whiplash

• Chiropractic treatments to end whiplash

• Ways to help avoid whiplash


If you don’t want whiplash to get in the way of your active lifestyle or if you’re ready to get rid of your existing whiplash condition, advice and help are at your fingertips. 



Whiplash is an injury that occurs when the head is violently and suddenly jerked back and forth. The forceful motion can cause the cervical spine (the portion of the spine in the neck) and the neck’s ligaments, muscles, and other soft tissues to become injured. 


When the affected tissues are strained or sprained due to the aggressive pull and stretch, discomfort is a common result. In many cases, the injured tissue puts undue pressure on the spine’s vertebrae or discs, making neck movement challenging. 


Common symptoms of whiplash include:

• Sharp, intense, radiating, or dull and aching neck pain 

• Loss of range of motion

• Loss of flexibility

• Headaches  

• Neck stiffness or weakness

• Dizziness

• Fatigue 

• Shoulder pain  

• Back pain 

• Difficulty sleeping

• Tingling or numbing in the arms


In almost all cases of whiplash, chiropractic care can be of significant benefit. Chiropractors use numerous solutions that treat the soft tissues and spine as they strengthen the body and re-establish proper structures and connectivity. 



When we think of whiplash, the next thought is generally a rear-ended car accident, and that’s for good reason. More often than not, when hit from behind in your vehicle, the neck is forced forward and back, and whiplash occurs. 


However, there are other reasons you may experience whiplash, including:

Sports injury– a fall, hit, blow, tackle, or an abrupt pull or lift can all cause whiplash 

• Aggressive pulling of the arms

• Slip and fall accident

• Workplace accident

• Traumatic accident 

• Physical fights 


Of course, you have no control over an accident, and you may not consider stopping your sport an option. So, if you find that you’re suffering from the condition, there are a few ways you can find comfort safely and naturally right now. 



If you’re currently in discomfort related to whiplash, try any of these solutions to help end your pain:

• Apply ice- after your accident, apply ice to the sore areas as soon as you can (remember to cover the ice pack in a towel to avoid burning the skin); this will reduce swelling and inflammation of the soft tissues 

• Apply heat- after 48 hours, apply heat to the same affected areas to loosen muscles and promote healthy oxygen and nutrients to the injury (feel free to go back and forth with ice and heat at this point)

• Do some gentle stretching- stretching the soft tissues of the affected areas will also help with inflammation and getting nutrient-rich circulation to the injury; this should be very easygoing, such as turning your head side to side or up and down, don’t take it too far, as you can add further imbalances that lead to more pain, if stretching heightens your discomfort, stop until you speak to your chiropractor 

• Support your neck- your neck is almost always working to support your head, so pressures are placed on the soft tissues through most of the day; use a U pillow to help take some of the efforts away from your neck while sitting and standing

• Rest- you may need to take a break from your usual routine of exercise and work, so give yourself the time to do that; forcing your body to its limit isn’t ideal while injured



west Seattle chiropractorIt’s always important to seek medical attention after any kind of accident. Even if you don’t initially have pain, you’ll get peace of mind knowing that you’re free from injury. And if you are injured, partnering with a whiplash chiropractor will help you heal responsibly and quickly. 


Common chiropractic treatments to end whiplash include:

Chiropractic adjustments– controlled and targeted spinal manipulations that help restore correct placement, reduce restrictions for proper movement, and quickly decrease pain  

• Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization– using chiropractic tools on injured soft tissues, the affected areas are restored through improved circulation and reduced inflammation, so your body can function properly 

Functional rehabilitation– a uniquely designed program of exercises and stretches that help you heal faster and maximize your recovery process 

• Take-home exercises– complementing the care received in-clinic, at-home strategies are created to encourage your health, strengthening, and overall wellness 

• And more


Untreated, whiplash can cause long-term complications such as chronic pain, reduced mobility and flexibility, and even mental stress or depression. Don’t take the chance and get the effective, non-invasive chiropractic care your body requires. 



Obviously, there’s no way to ensure you never get whiplash; however, you can minimize the possibility by utilizing these steps:

• Always wear your seatbelt

• Ensure your headrest is properly adjusted 

• Avoid activities that put the neck at risk

• Always move and lift correctly 

• Wear padding and braces when necessary 



Our team is determined to get your neck healthy and strong, so it can support you and your active life. We don’t rely on pain medication and work hard to avoid surgery or other invasive procedures that lead to downtime. 

Our team is energetic and motivated, and soon, you will be too. Let’s get you better faster; book today