Whiplash can upend your planning for a healthy delivery if you are unable to seek proper treatment. It is a neck injury that can damage the tendons and muscles of the neck. Some whiplash injuries are deep enough to cause major damage to the spine. The second type of injury is considered dangerous for pregnant women as it can cause temporary, or even permanent disability.
How Can You Suffer Whiplash Injury?
You can suffer whiplash injury during pregnancy in the same manner as you could injure yourself in daily life. One of the most common causes of whiplash is a motor vehicle accident. It is possible to suffer a blow to your neck whether you are sitting in a car or standing outside while a car hits you. A sudden twisting of the neck can damage the delicate balance of the spine. It can also tear the neck ligaments and induce cramp.
You can also suffer from whiplash while playing a sport or doing stretching exercise to help an easy delivery. Irrespective of the route of injury, there is likely to be pain, numbness and temporary disability.
What to do Immediately After an Injury?
Whiplash can be an extremely painful occurrence. Given the fact that your body’s immunity will be low due to the pregnancy, you may feel additional symptoms. Some women have fainted after suffering a blow while others have reported of a sudden onset of nausea. There can be many symptoms of whiplash and it is important that you try your best to prevent them.
The first thing to do after suffering a blow to your neck is to stop whatever you were doing and take a seat. You should try to move your neck as little as possible while finding a stool, chair, or sofa to sit on. A secondary twisting of the neck can cause complications. You can then call for help from your friends, colleagues or family members. If there is extreme pain then it is recommended that you call for paramedics. Immediate treatment is required for damaged cervical discs.
Safe Treatment for Whiplash
The first thing to tell a doctor while seeking treatment is about your pregnancy along with trimester details and expected date of delivery. You should also tell about the medication that you are taking and if you are diabetic or have any other illnesses. This will help a doctor in recommending medicines that do not conflict with your current medicine regimen.
A severe neck injury can be best detected with diagnostic tools. While MRI is considered relatively safe for pregnancy, CT scans have added risks. They use ionizing radiation that can interfere with the normal functions of a foetus. It is a good idea to ask the doctor to suggest an alternative to CT scan if possible.
Surgical treatment remains the only solution for major damage to the spine. You can, however, delay this surgery in some cases. It is recommended to seek the opinion of a number of doctors to reach the best conclusion about treatment that does not undermine your health or compromise the life of the baby.