Physiotherapy Whiplash Exercises After Motor Vehicle Accident
Whiplash is the term used to describe the injury sustained to the neck from a motor vehicle accident. Whiplash is the result of the sudden acceleration-deceleration forces caused when one vehicle collides with another.
Common symptoms of whiplash include; headaches, sore and stiff neck, aching in shoulders and arms, and feelings of light-headedness. These symptoms can occur immediately after the car accident or, sometimes, hours and even days later.
The following exercises have been created to assist in your recovery from Whiplash injury. Before engaging in any new exercise, please consult with a qualified health practitioner such as your Physiotherapist or Physician.
Exercises for Whiplash
These exercises should be performed at least twice a day and will take no longer than 10 minutes.
If you have any pain or symptoms of discomfort, stop the exercise immediately and consult your Physiotherapist.
1) Neck Chin Tucks
- Lie on your bed and place a small folded towel under your head for support
- Slowly and gently tuck your chin as if you are saying ‘yes’; and feel the back of your head slide up the bed; hold this position for a count of 10 seconds, and perform 10x twice per day
- Sit or stand in an upright position with your elbows bent to 90 degrees
- Draw your shoulder blades back and together
- Squeeze and hold your shoulder blades together for 10 seconds, and perform 10x twice per day
3) Eye-Head Coordination
Sometimes following a car accident, some people may feel light-headedness or dizziness association with their whiplash symptoms. By practicing the coordinating your head and eye movements you can slowly resolve these symptoms.
- Eyes still, head moves – Hold a pen up in front of your eyes. Keep your eyes fixated on the pen while slowly and gently rotating your head from one side to the other.
- Head still, eyes move – Keep your head still. Hold a pen about 20cm in front of your eyes. Then move the pen side to side, following the pen with your eyes and keeping your head still.
These are 3 helpful exercises to assist you in your recovery from Whiplash. You can actively help to control your pain by performing the above exercises on a regular basis.
This article is designed to supplement care provided by your health care provider. If you have any questions or concerns please contact a qualified health provider for further assistance.
If you have been involved in a car vehicle accident in Toronto and would like to attend Physiotherapy in Downtown Toronto at Ace Physio please contact us at 416-900-6653