If you were involved in an automobile accident and sustained a whiplash injury, then it is vital you seek professional medical assistance. In addition, you can follow each of the following tips to assist with your recovery process.
Tip: Avoid All Painful Movements to Prevent Further Injuries and Increased Inflammation
While you may need physical therapy or other medical treatment to heal from your injuries, one of the most important things you can personally do following your auto accident is to prevent making the problem worse.
Thankfully, your body uses pain to signal to you it is in pain. It is vital you listen to these signals in the weeks following your accident. Whiplash involves injuries of the soft tissues surrounding your upper spine and neck. To prevent further damaging these sensitive tissues and making your recovery time longer, avoid any movements that make you feel pain. This is especially important during the first week following your accident.
Tip: Choose an Ice Pack Over a Heating Pad
You need to actively prevent additional swelling in the area around your whiplash injury. The best way to do so is to use an ice pack. Wrap it in a towel, and then apply the ice pack to your injury. Repeat this a few times each day or whenever you have pain.
While you may be tempted to get out your heating pad, this isn't a good idea. Heating injured tissues and joints will lead to additional swelling. However, in a few days, most of the swelling will be gone and then you will be able to alternate cooling and heating the area to facilitate faster healing.
Tip: Take Over-the-Counter Anti-inflammatory Medications Instead of Pain Medication
If your whiplash injury is minor and you don't require prescription pain medication, then you will likely get more pain relief from over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications than over-the-counter pain medications. Whiplash pain is caused primarily by inflammation and decreasing it will give you more pain relief than taking something like Tylenol.
Tip: Visit a Medical Clinic or Physical Therapy Practice Specializing in Auto Accident Injuries
If you have never been injured in a car accident before, then you may not realize there are specialty clinics like Atlanta Personal Injury Clinics that have a lot of experience treating whiplash injuries. Reaching out to one post-accident is always a good idea because they have the most experience with this type of injury and what it takes to heal your body.