Whiplash Treatment

About Us

Indian Harbor Chiropractic

Diana Gailes, DC

Chiropractor located in Cos Cob, CT

Whiplash is a common problem In the country, with over 3 million people suffering from the condition every year. The devastating long-term problems experienced through victims of whiplash are represented by the 300,000 individuals that become disabled from its symptoms every year. Occasionally, after experiencing a car accident, some people choose to ignore small pains and neglect what they assume are minor injuries or temporary discomforts. This is a huge mistake, and serious injuries such as Whiplash are often minimized or not prioritized. Whiplash is a result of the powerful impact when your head is violently thrust forward and then backward after being rear-ended. The pain experienced through the shoulders and neck and the swelling and stiffness usually cannot be treated effectively with medications or at home-treatment. Roughly 25% of whiplash patients report symptoms for a year, so in any situation this injury should be examined by a professional. Chiropractic care should be your first line of treatment for whiplash, from which you can experience a fast recovery using holistic, medication free chiropractic techniques. If you are suffering from whiplash it's important to see the best chiropractor in Greenwich, CT for natural, non-invasive means of finding and correcting the underlying cause of your pain. Turn to Indian Harbor Chiropractic in Cos Cob, Connecticut where your chiropractor Dr. Diana Gailes will apply the appropriate, personalized treatment for your whiplash and offer highly effective relief. Call the office to schedule an appointment or book one online today.

Whiplash Q&A

​​​​​​​What is Whiplash?

Whiplash is a serious neck injury, most often caused by a car accident, but it can also be a result of sports injuries, falling accidents, or physical trauma. Whiplash is usually first experienced as a sharp pain throughout the neck and shoulders that runs up into the back of the neck and head. The pain worsens after a few day and the neck completely stiffens, causing a decreased range of motion. There are two types of whiplash:

  • Acute Whiplash - Whiplash develops immediately after injury
  • Chronic Whiplash -Whiplash symptoms last longer than three months

What are the causes of Whiplash?

An estimated 45% of Americans that suffer from chronic neck pain claim it is associated with a previous motor vehicle accident. That beind said, the most common cause of whiplash is a rear-end car accident. When a car is hit, the violent force of the impact throws the heads backwards and then forwards. This shocking and forceful movement can injure the muscles, ligaments, and tendons in the neck.

Other causes of whiplash may include:

  • Sports injuries, most often during football, hockey, and soccer
  • Falls
  • Theme Park and Roller Coaster Rides - abrupt movements

What are the Symptoms of Whiplash?

Symptoms of Whiplash may include:

  • Neck pain and stiffness
  • Muscle spasms in the neck and shoulders
  • Visual & Auditory Changes
  • Jaw Pain
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Blurred vision
  • Vertigo
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Numbness
  • Tingling in the hands
  • Anxiety or Depression
  • Difficulty sleeping

How is whiplash treated?

The treatment for Whiplash depends on the severity of your injury. Treatment may include:

  • Physical Therapy
  • Chiropractic Care
  • Ice therapy
  • Heat therapy
  • Anti-Inflammatory Medication
  • Neck Brace

What are the complications of whiplash?

Most cases of whiplash can heal naturally within a couple months with regular chiropractic treatment. If left untreated, whiplash can actually lead to chronic neck pain or even neurological damage depending on the severity of the injury.

  • Chronic neck pain: Whiplash may cause some people to experience chronic pain in the neck and shoulders, making it difficult to work, sleep, and perform everyday tasks.
  • Headaches: Headaches are a common complication of whiplash. They are usually caused by muscle spasms in the neck or by changes / damages in the nerves that support the neck and head.
  • Dizziness and vertigo: Dizziness and vertigo can be caused by damage to the inner ear during whiplash, or by changes in the nerves that control balance.
  • Cognitive problems: Whiplash may cause some people to experience changes in their brain, such as memory loss, difficulty concentrating, and fatigue.
  • Psychological problems: Whiplash can cause anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) based on the physical pain of the injury or the emotional stress it causes afterwards.

How do I prevent whiplash?

Certain situations may make you, the driver, more likely to develop whiplash such as having your head rotated during the collision or not being seated properly in the driver's seat. One study conducted by an upper cervical chiropractor at the Spine Research Institute of San Diego showed that only 10% of car crashes can be avoided. Research shows that most accidents occur when the driver is completely unaware, so just a few seconds of preparation can limit your risk of developing whiplash or other serious injuries as a result. Some things you can do to prevent or minimize whiplash or other injuries during an auto accident include:

  • Consider Safety When Buying A Car:
    • Vehicle design, size - small cars = greater risk
    • Head restraint height in relation to your height.
    • The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety[3] publishes vehicle safety ratings.
  • Wear A Seat Belt - Every time you get into a car, immediately fasten your seat belt.
  • Check Your Kids' Car Seats: Carefully follow manufacturers' instructions and safety guidelines when installing your child’s car seat. Also, a child is recommended to remain positioned rear-facing until the age of two.
  • Position Yourself For the Crash: If you have even a few seconds to prepare yourself for a crash, follow these tips:
    • Lean your head and neck back as far as possible, grip the steering wheel with both hands and straight arms, and press your foot on the brake as hard as you can (assuming this is a safe choice).
    • Look straight forward and don’t turn your head even to check the mirror. Scrunch your shoulders up toward your ears to brace for impact. After the crash immediately file a report and seek medical care.
  • Begin chiropractic care at least two weeks prior to the accident to prevent further injury and faster recovery.

What are specific chiropractic adjustments used to treat whiplash?

At Indian Harbor Chiropractic we know that misalignments of the spine, or damages to the ligaments and muscles that support the neck can contribute to whiplash. Also, manipulations during adjustments can restore movement to the joints or parts of the spine that have an alignment issue. Goals of whiplash include improving the range of motion, strengthening neck and shoulder muscles, and realigning the bones in the neck and shoulder. We use a variety of techniques to adjust the spine and improve alignment including:

Chiropractic adjustments

Chiropractic adjustments can realign your spine or other parts of the body, reduce tension, and alleviate discomfort due to thoracic outlet syndrome symptoms and pain. Chiropractic treatments Dr. Gailes offers at Indian Harbor Chiropractic include motion palpation, spinal adjustments, activator application, drop table care, and neuromuscular therapy to treat whiplash.

Spinal manipulation therapy (SMT)

Spinal manipulation is accomplished through high-velocity, low-amplitude (HVLA) adjustments. This is a technique where Dr. Gailes will apply a controlled thrust to a joint of the spine. This motion moves the joint more than it would on its own. SMT is actually a collection of techniques which include massage or mobilization of soft tissue, adjustment of spinal subluxations, trigger point therapy, cross-friction massage, active release therapy, and mechanical traction on an area of the spine or on an extremity.

Myofascial release

This technique uses gentle pressure to release tension in the muscles and fascia, relieving pain and improving range of motion.

Activator techniques

These adjustments use a small, handheld instrument to deliver low-force impulses at specific points.

What are some other chiropractic treatments used to treat whiplash?

Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS)

TENS sends electrical pulses through the skin to start your body's own painkillers. The electrical pulses can release endorphins and other substances to stop pain signals in the brain. TENS can reduce pain. Tens also works on muscles and causes muscle contractions by stimulating α-motor neurons. It is highly effective in improving muscle function, strengthening muscles, and improving joint range of motion.

Massage Therapy

At Indian Harbor Chiropractic, your neck pain treatment involves massage therapy, a holistic, drug-free pain relief method that releases muscle spasms and remedies alignment issues that put undue pressure on the nerves.

Begin with chiropractic care today

For effective whiplash treatment call the Indian Harbor Chiropractic office or schedule an appointment online today.



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