While whiplash is one of the most common car accident injuries, it is also one of the most misunderstood conditions. In fact, many people don’t realize that they have sustained head and neck trauma in the first few minutes following an accident. They also may not connect the dots days, weeks, or months down the line when they’re in severe pain. Here’s a look at three surprising facts about whiplash:

  • It doesn’t necessarily show up right away. While some people do feel pain immediately, others may not feel pain for one to two hours. It can take 24 hours for it to show up in many cases.
  • This is not necessarily a temporary condition! Many people live with pain or loss of mobility for weeks, months, or years following neck trauma. In one study, 40 percent of patients were still symptomatic 10 years after injury.
  • Symptoms can occur in more places than just your head and neck. In fact, some people have difficulties with focus, concentration, and mood.

For some people, the long-term effects can include pain, stiffness, headaches, numbness, tingling, and tiredness. It can often be very difficult to exercise or participate in sports. Even something as simple as driving can become difficult due to sensations of pain or stiffness that make it hard to turn your neck quickly to check for oncoming traffic. Here’s a look at the full list of symptoms that can linger for the long term:

  • Neck pain and stiffness.
  • Neck pain that intensifies when you move your neck.
  • Loss of the ability to move or stretch the neck.
  • Headaches that begin at the base of the skull.
  • Feelings of dizziness.
  • Blurred vision.
  • Numbness and tingling in the arms and shoulders.
  • Ringing in the ears.

For some people, the long-term effects create cognitive issues. This can come in the form of memory issues, difficulty with focusing or general feelings of confusion. In some cases, unexplained mood issues, depression, and irritability are actually undiagnosed long-term symptoms of this condition. Lastly, sleep disturbances caused by pain and discomfort can really wreak havoc on a person’s energy levels, mental health, and overall health.

Treat Neck Pain to Stop Long-Term Symptoms

Seeing an auto injury chiropractor immediately after an accident may help you to get on a path to healing to prevent long-term pain and discomfort. Manual adjustments may also be able to help you finally get the relief you need to live your life if you’ve been dealing with painful, debilitating long-term symptoms following an accident that was several months to several years ago. It’s simply never too late to get your neck and shoulders back in alignment to stop painful, restrictive symptoms following a neck trauma.

Get Help for a Neck Injury Following a Car Accident in Salt Lake City

A prenatal chiropractor specializing in helping pregnant women, Dr. Tiffani Fries also treats pain and reduced range of motion stemming from car accidents and other injuries. In fact, Genesis Chiropractic is proud to bring healing and wellness to our patients all throughout Salt Lake City, Utah; Millcreek, Utah; and Holladay, Utah. For more information about whiplash treatment, contact Genesis Chiropractic to book your appointment.