Precision Pain Care & Rehabilitation logo
Queens Office (718) 215-1888
Long Island Office (516) 419-4480
Make an Appointment
  • Play slider
  • Pause slider

Pain Management: What Is Whiplash? | Stem Cell, PRP, Acupuncture in Queens & Long Island, New York

Pain Management: What Is Whiplash?
Pain Management: What Is Whiplash?


When someone’s head moves back and then forward very fast, whiplash occurs. What happens is that the force exerted by that unexpected motion extends the ligaments and tissues in your neck beyond their natural range of motion, causing some damage as well as pain.

What Are Some Typical Causes of Whiplash?

One of the most common causes of whiplash is being involved in a car accident. When you are rear-ended, and the car suddenly stops, the inertia drives your head forward until the seatbelt or something else stops you, hyperextending your neck’s tissues.

At this point, the head moves backward, hyperextending your muscles and ligaments in the opposite direction. Though car accidents are perhaps the most common, there are many other ways whiplash can occur. Take, for example, receiving a blow to the face; your head will likely suffer the same range of motion.

Contact sports like martial arts or even football and hockey often experience accidents leading to whiplash. Any activity where you are moving fast, such as biking, horseback riding, or skating, is also commonly associated with whiplash.

Symptoms Associated With Whiplash

Stiffness of the neck coupled with pain, increasing pain when you try to move your neck, headaches originating at the base of your skull, shoulder pain, upper back pain, or tingling in the arms. Other less common symptoms can include blurred vision, problems with sleeping, irritability, and memory problems. In some cases, depression can even occur.

Is There a Treatment for Whiplash?

While there is no silver bullet, usually a good rule of thumb is to apply ice early. Over-the-counter pain meds like Tylenol may be used to manage the pain; if you are having muscle spasms, however, you may need something more substantial such as muscle relaxants, to be prescribed by your doctor.

Until recently, the recommended course of action after whiplash was to wear a collar for a few days, as this would allow the ligaments and muscles in your neck some rest. Recently, however, the trend is to start early movement instead. Your physical therapist will be able to determine the best course of action for your injury; as everyone is different, each injury should be treated as such.

Get Whiplash Treatments

Physical therapy massages have been known to relieve the tension in neck muscles and can help alleviate the pain. Ensure your massage therapist is licensed to avoid further damage. Stimulation of the nerves with the use of a mild electrical current is also commonly used. It can lead to a faster recovery and better pain management. This should only be administered by a licensed and certified medical professional.

Most people do not develop any long-term complications due to whiplash. The average recovery time tends to take from several days to a few weeks depending on the severity of the case. Statistically, most people are expected to make a full recovery within a maximum window of three months.

Precision Pain Care and Rehabilitation has two convenient locations in Richmond Hill – Queens and New Hyde Park – Long Island. Call the Queens office at (718) 215-1888, or (516) 419-4480 for the Long Island office, to arrange an appointment with our Interventional Pain Management Specialist, Dr. Jeffrey Chacko.

Love this Post? Spread the World