Listen or Read Dr. Serafini’s Monthly Podcast Interview!
Question 1: One of the most common injuries suffered during a car accident is whiplash. How do you describe what whiplash is and what causes it?
RC: So first question. One of the most common injuries suffered during a car accident is whiplash. How do you describe what whiplash is and what causes it?
Dr. Chris Serafini: Whiplash is caused by really a backward and forward jerking motion of the head. It is often as a result of a car accident but not exclusively – a lot of times, you can see that with other traumas as well – sporting accidents and different things like that.
Question 2: What symptoms do people experience when they have whiplash?
RC: Okay and what symptoms do people experience when they have whiplash?
Dr. Chris Serafini: Typically, most would experience neck pain and stiffness. It’s kind of an obvious symptom but also headaches, pain between the shoulder blades, you could have numbness going down into the arms and hands, dizziness, difficulty concentrating and remembering things, irritability, sleeping problems. The severity of the symptoms obviously is one thing to consider but there are many symptoms and that’s really for the professional to kind of delineate if it’s a whiplash case or not.
Question 3: Can you diagnose whiplash right away or do you have to wait for the symptoms to appear?
RC: Okay. Can you diagnose whiplash right away or do you have to wait for the symptoms to appear?
Dr. Chris Serafini: Although a lot of times the symptoms can be delayed for twenty-four hours to forty-eight hours, you don’t have to wait. So there’s a lot of objective tools that you’re going to use to try and diagnose whiplash as far as muscle spasms, decrease range of motion, swelling, inflammation. Those kind of objective findings you can diagnose whiplash as well so it doesn’t have to just be pain and symptoms. Although like I said, they will a lot of times be delayed for a little bit. Kind of like working out, you’re not really sore or feel the effects of that for a couple days.
Question 4: How do you treat someone suffering from whiplash?
RC: Right so how do you treat someone suffering from whiplash?
Dr. Chris Serafini: Great question. So when you’re referencing whiplash, there is going to be damage and injury to what I reference as a soft tissue of the body. So that would be like muscles, ligaments and tendons but also to the discs and also to the bones. When that trauma happens, you’re shifting bones as well as damaging muscles, ligaments and tendons and when you shift the bones, they get misaligned and that’s really where chiropractic comes in to play as far as us being the specialist that addresses that.
So we use cold light lasers a lot of times. Physical therapy and the cold light lasers are going to work on the soft tissue damage to the tissue. Laser is going to help with cell regeneration and repair. You can often increase healing times up to fifty to seventy-five percent faster with cold light lasers. There’s other modalities, like I said physical therapy and adjustments. We put all of those together when we are working with a whiplash case.
Question 5: What happens if whiplash is ignored and left untreated? Are there any long term effects?
RC: What happens if whiplash is ignored and left untreated? Are there any long term effects?
Dr. Chris Serafini: Another great question. Absolutely. Many times when I’m doing a history with a patient, they will reference a whiplash injury that they’ve had in the past. So not only will you have that soft tissue damage once again but you will have bones that misalign as well and if those bones are never re-positioned or aligned properly it can lead to long term problems. Many patients over the years after having a whiplash injury will complain of neck pain and stiffness and numbness, headaches – many different symptoms. But yeah, there’s absolutely long term damage that can happen.
RC: Well thank you so much Dr. Serafini we know you’re really busy so I just want to thank you for all of your time and help today.
Dr. Chris Serafini: Awesome, you’re welcome. Thanks for having me.
RC: And for our listeners across the country, if you are interested in speaking with Dr. Chris Serafini, you can either go online at www.TheScottsdaleChiropractor.com or call (480) 443-7678 to schedule an appointment.
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