Ongoing neck pain is a common complaint in both auto accidents and concussions. The head is bent back and forth on the cervical spine, which results in neck muscle injury and irritation. Useful treatments for whiplash include:
- Taking anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen (Advil®, Motrin®), aspirin, or naproxen (Aleve®).
- Learning proper head/neck posture, especially when working on the computer or watching television.
- Physical therapy with a PT trained in either concussion or cervical spine.
- Temporarily keeping the neck still by using a soft foam neck brace (“immobilization”).
- Applying ice and/or heat (sessions of 20 minutes on, 20 minutes off).
- Injections of steroids and lidocaine into the nerve at the base of the skull to relieve pain.
Your healthcare provider can give you more specific information on these treatments or where to turn for more help.