Whiplash occurs when your child's head is suddenly forced forward and then snapped backward, as might happen in a car crash or sports injury. This can cause neck pain and stiffness. Your child's head, chest, shoulders, and arms also may hurt.
Most whiplash gets better with home care. Your doctor may advise you to give your child medicine to relieve pain or relax the muscles. Your doctor may suggest exercise and physiotherapy to increase flexibility and relieve pain. Your child can try wearing a neck (cervical) collar to support his or her neck. For a while your child probably will need to avoid lifting and other activities that can strain the neck.
Follow-up care is a key part of your child's treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if your child is having problems. It's also a good idea to know your child's test results and keep a list of the medicines your child takes.
Call 911 anytime you think your child may need emergency care. For example, call if:
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your child's health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:
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Current as of: March 21, 2017
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
& E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
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