What Are the Most Common Causes of Whiplash?

When people are involved in a motor vehicle accident, they can suffer a host of injuries. Thankfully, most car crashes are minor. There’s a good chance you’ll walk away unscathed. Even if you are injured, there’s a good chance your injuries will be minor. One of the more common auto accident injuries is whiplash.

It doesn’t take much for a person to suffer from whiplash. If it wasn’t an auto accident, then it could be a great fall. Any accident that causes your neck to be stretched too far in a given direction can cause whiplash. Every year, hundreds of people come to our Atlanta treatment center with whiplash. They often come to us in a great deal of pain and discomfort.

If you think you have whiplash but aren’t sure, you need to contact our Atlanta treatment center right away. We can examine you and offer a variety of services to help reduce your pain. Here, we will talk about some of the more common causes of whiplash. We will also briefly discuss what can be done to help you recover from this injury.

What Is Whiplash and How Does it Happen?

You can end up with a whiplash injury in a variety of ways. What happens is that whatever trauma you experience causes your neck to be stretched beyond its normal limits. Whiplash typically happens when your head is forcefully and quickly tossed around.

Motor Vehicle Accidents Are One of the Leading Causes of Whiplash

It should come as no surprise that motor vehicle accidents are the biggest cause of whiplash. Regardless of what kind of vehicle you’re driving at the time of your crash, you could suffer whiplash.

As soon as the other vehicle hits your car, the impact will likely cause your head to roll forward. It will also get yanked back and forth during the course of the accident. Many of the people who come to our Atlanta treatment center were involved in a car crash recently.

Many People Suffer Whiplash Due to a Sports Accident

Another major cause of whiplash is when somebody plays sports, and their head is knocked backward. For example, if you play basketball, you could be fouled by another player. This could cause your neck to get pulled or pushed too harshly in the wrong direction.

The same thing can happen when you’re playing football. You may get tackled and the person directs their hit right at your neck. This can knock your head and neck in all different directions.

A woman with whiplash reading the doctor's recommendations

If You Experience a Serious Fall, You May Suffer from Whiplash

Some people who suffered whiplash were injured in a fall. If you work in construction, for example, you could fall from a piece of scaffolding. The same is true if you are a utility worker. You could fall from more than 8-10 feet off the ground.

When this happens, your neck is going to twist in an awful direction. You could end up with either whiplash or a neck sprain. Or worse. Even if you try to break your fall, there’s no way to prevent whiplash from happening. When you first come to our Atlanta treatment center, let them know exactly what you were doing at the time of your injury.

How Do I Know if I Have Whiplash?

When you arrive at our Atlanta treatment center after an accident, we will run whatever diagnostic tests we feel are necessary. Some of these include the following:

  • X-ray
  • MRI
  • CT scan
  • Ultrasound
  • Neurological examination
  • Physical examination

Imaging tests won’t prove that you’ve suffered whiplash, but they rule out other injuries that you could be causing your pain. An X-ray will confirm if you’ve suffered a broken bone or fracture. An MRI or CT scan can help determine whether you’ve suffered a brain injury or some internal injury.

You’ll have to describe your symptoms to your practitioner at our Atlanta treatment center. Some of the common symptoms that indicate a person is suffering from whiplash include:

  • Stiffness in your neck
  • Pain
  • Inability to move your neck as far as you usually can
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Tingling in your arms and fingers
  • Your head hurts worse when you move it from left to right.

The Practitioners at Our Atlanta Treatment Center Can Help You Recover

Of the reasons we recommend people come to our Atlanta treatment center after their accident is so they can be assessed for any injuries. If your practitioners discover that you have whiplash, they will do what they can to help.

Once you call and schedule your initial assessment, you’ll have a better idea of what is wrong with you. This will also give our treatment team a chance to come up with a plan to ease your pain and discomfort. Our team can use chiropractic care to reduce your pain. They can also teach you gentle stretching injuries that relieve stiffness in your neck and improve your range of motion.