Beyond Adjustments: 3 Devices A Chiropractor May Use To Treat Whiplash

After an accident, whiplash symptoms can plague you for weeks — or even months. However, the sooner you treat them, the sooner they will fade into the background. A chiropractor can do a great job of treating whiplash, primarily by adjusting your spine to take strain off the muscles and tendons in the area. In addition to adjusting your spine, though, they will likely use one or more of the following devices to treat your condition.

TENS Device

A TENS device basically uses low-powered electrical stimulation to ease pain and tension in muscles. It can be really helpful for easing the short-term stiffness patients often experience with whiplash. You may go into your chiropractor's office unable to turn your head more than 10 or 15 degrees and then leave with a full range of motion restored after using the TENS device. 

TENS devices tend to look a bit scary, but they are really not. There are a couple of electrodes that your chiropractor will place on either side of your spine, along the sides of your neck. You will feel your muscles contract and relax quickly as the TENS device delivers electrical stimulation, but this won't hurt. The treatment will only take a couple of minutes.

Cold Laser Device

More and more, chiropractors are also beginning to use cold lasers for relief of whiplash pain. You won't feel anything, other than perhaps a sense of immediate relaxation, while the laser is aimed at the back of your neck. The laser's wavelength is such that it affects the way nerve impulses travel through these tissues, alleviating pain. It also stimulates healing. You will feel some relief right after a cold laser session, but the most notable effect is faster healing overall. For instance, with cold laser therapy, it may take you 2 weeks, rather than 4 weeks, to heal. (This is just a rough estimate or example.)

Pulse Massager

Another device a chiropractor might use on your neck is a pulse massager. This device pounds in and out very quickly. In doing so, it really helps relax the muscles in your neck and get rid of any knots. Muscle tension can pull the spine back out of alignment and slow your healing from whiplash. By easing muscle tension with the pulse massager, your chiropractor helps keep the spine in alignment, which will help encourage your whiplash to heal faster. The sensation of having the pulse massager work on you can be intense, but you'll immediately feel relief.

Chiropractors do more than just adjust spines, especially in whiplash patients. Do not be surprised if yours pulls out one or more of these devices to use on your neck.

To learn more about whiplash treatment, reach out to a local chiropractor.