Whiplash disorder can be very uncomfortable. But did you know that chiropractic care is an excellent approach for managing it? We will perform in office treatment such as spinal manipulation, mobilization, soft tissue therapy, massage and more. But at home exercise will maintain these improvements and reduce the risk of developing chronic pain or experiencing re-injury in the future.
When injured and a whiplash event, the superficial muscles in the neck spasm. This is to protect nearby tissues from further injury. Short term, this is a good thing, but if the movement remains restricted, the deep neck muscles that are important for maintaining posture become deconditioned.
If these neck muscles are weakened, the superficial muscles that normally control voluntary movements take on more work. This results in further weakening of the deep neck muscles and therefore sets up a vicious cycle. A study done in 2018 followed 141 whiplash disorder patients for one year and found that those who were not able to return from their pre-injury work activities had an average of 50% reduction in neck muscle strength.
So, make sure you are performing at home exercises to strengthen the deep neck flexor muscles and get them back to work.
One example of an exercise which you can perform right at home is rejecting your chin in word followed by nodding your head. You can apply resistance and place your fist under your chin and slowly work against both the upward and downward movements. Start at 10% maximum resistance and as you improve, you can add additional resistance and wraps to your sets.
Come and visit us, your local chiropractic care center and we will show you all of the different ways to re-strength the neck muscles which are ideal for your unique case.