Research Connects Post-traumatic Stress and Auto Injuries
After the traumatic experience of an auto accident, some people suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). New research suggests your likelihood of having PTSD is higher if you have a neck disability from whiplash.
In a recent study, researchers evaluated 150 patients with whiplash to determine whether they had a neck disability and/or PTSD. Researchers used baseline predictors, or factors that predict the likelihood of having a neck disability or PTSD based on age, gender, initial pain, pressure pain thresholds, cold pain thresholds, and sympathetic vasoconstrictor responses. They discovered that the factors predicting neck disability were the same factors predicting PTSD. This suggests a close relationship between PTSD and the development of neck disability from whiplash.
Although not everyone with whiplash develops a neck disability or PTSD, it's important to take steps to prevent your whiplash injury from worsening and to manage the potential psychological effects of an auto collision. Visit a chiropractor to assess your whiplash as soon as possible after your injury. This will help put you on the path to effective, safe recovery.
Sterling, M. Hendrikz J, Kenardy J. Similar factors predict disability and posttraumatic stress disorder trajectories after whiplash injury. Pain 2011 March 9.