Is Massage an Effective Treatment for Whiplash
Traditional medicinal methods of treating the many and varied symptoms of whiplash can be a long and ultimately futile experience. Alternative therapies are becoming increasingly popular among many people looking to alleviate the often debilitating injuries of whiplash. Some have experienced success with chiropractic care, while others are turning to the age-old process of massage.
Massage has been used for thousands of years to alleviate the painful symptoms of soft tissue injuries. The ancient Chinese civilizations originally used massage therapy. It was then introduced to western cultures by Greek and Roman physicians who were impressed by how effectively massage could relieve the pain caused by many injuries.
How does massage help whiplash victims?
By manipulating the muscles affected by a whiplash injury, such as those in the neck, shoulders, and upper back, a professional massage therapist can speed up the healing process by increasing the amount of oxygen these muscles receive. The massage process is also well known for relieving the tension in muscles, and this loosening can help lessen the pain caused by the injuries associated with whiplash.
Other effects of massage include a boost to the immune system and an increase in the number of endorphins produced by the body. Endorphins are known to help control consistent pain and ease the feelings of stress and frustration that can make the symptoms of a whiplash injury worse.
Two of the most common symptoms of whiplash are neck pain and headaches. The massage process can work to eradicate certain trigger points that are present in and around the neck and head. With regular sessions, a professional massage therapist can remove this pain entirely by paying particular attention to trigger points found on the top of the head, close to the eyes, and at the bottom of the neck.
The technique will involve a range of light and deeper massage, ranging from the soft stroking of problematic areas to the deeper kneading of muscles, which works to remove tension by loosening and stretching connective tissues.
Massage need not be used in isolation, as several complementary therapies supplement the process. Aromatherapy can work in harmony with massage, so long as it is carried out by an experienced practitioner with knowledge of the specific oils required to alleviate particular symptoms. Ultrasound is another therapy that has been used with great success to alleviate the symptoms experienced by whiplash victims.