Success Story Saturday: Neck & Shoulder Pain from Whiplash

Diagnosis: Whiplash secondary motor vehicle accident

neck Success Story Saturday: Neck & Shoulder Pain from Whiplash“I performed an initial evaluation on a patient following a car accident where her primary complaint was pain on her left side of her neck which increased during neck rotation. At the end of the Initial Examination, we went over a few stretches for the neck that would help her in the mornings fight the stiffness and help with driving (turning to check mirrors and blind-spot).

The last few minutes of the session was dedicated to going over the appropriate support during sleep positioning (supine and side-sleeping) since she reported some disturbance in sleeping due to neck discomfort.

After assessing her typical sleep position, I noted that she wasn’t supporting her neck even though her head was on the pillow, She tucked her hands under her neck btu this was irritating her nerves even more upon waking. I made suggestions for improving support to neck, arms, low back, and legs using pillows and towels under all horizontal surfaces that weren’t supported by the bed, making sure that I placed the pillows from proximal to distal aspects of each body part. One of the big keys was to place a pillow under her arm starting at the armpit (from the proximal part of the arm to the distal part of the arm at the wrist) so that the arm weight didn’t pull on the patient’s injured neck at night when she wasn’t consciously guarding it.

The patient realized the importance of being comfortable so she could get a restful night’s sleep and not increase the mechanical irritations to the cervical area. At the beginning of the second session, the patient was very excited about how well she had been sleeping the past couple nights. She told us that everyone should get this quick and simple education adn couldn’t be happier that she did!”

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