Whiplash Injury Patients

A whiplash injury can result in the development of chronic headache, ear problems, dizziness, eye problems and clicking and jaw pain.

Whiplash injuries have traditionally been considered to be a rather minor and self-limiting type of problem which was not thought to be associated with any related serious or permanent side effects.

However, it has recently been documented that following a whiplash injury or other similar type of neck injury many “seemingly unrelated” symptoms can develop, even several months following the actual injury, that are now known to be directly associated with and related to the effects of the whiplash.

The following symptoms have been directly associated with a whiplash injury and have been observed to develop from several hours to several months following the neck injury:

1. Chronic headache (variable in its intensity, duration and location).

2. Dizziness or lightheadedness (from seconds to several minutes).

3. Ringing, buzzing, whooshing or other sounds in the ears.

4. Fullness in the ears, nose or sinuses.

5. Pain in the face.

6. Pain or a “foreign body” feeling in the throat.

7. Difficulty in swallowing

8. Pain in, or in back of, the eyes and other visual problems

9. Clicking of the jaw joint.

10. Pain in or around the jaw joint or in the face when chewing or talking.

11. A stiffness or “tired feeling” in the muscles of the face.

12. Unusual fatigue or lack of energy.

13. Mysterious skin rashes (that may not respond to the unusual medications).

14. Hot or cold “spots” throughout the body.

15. Pain in the scalp area.

It has been reported that the “typical” patient developing one or more of these previously mentioned symptoms following a whiplash (or other similar neck injury) is most often a female between the ages of twenty and fifty. Although males and females in other age groups have been examined by one or more of a variety of medical specialist (neurologist, ear, nose, and throat specialist, orthopedist, internist), in addition to having had a rather wide variety of sophisticated and expensive diagnostic test ordered by their doctors in an attempt to find the cause of their problem.

Most often, however, these tests fail to provide any useful diagnostic information, and, in the absence of any other conclusive data, the patient is often advised to seek the aid of a psychologist or psychiatrist in order to explore the possibility of a psychosomatic origin to their so-called symptoms, or they are simply advised to just “learn to live with” their problem.

It is important to note……………..

Any whiplash injury patient who has developed any single or any number of the symptoms previously outlined, and who still “suffers” with their symptoms of “unknown origin” following a series of inconclusive medical tests, consultations, and treatment, may be suffering from traumatically induced temporomandibular joint dysfunction syndrome.

Temporomandibular joint dysfunction syndrome, or TMJ syndrome, is a frequently un-diagnosed or misdiagnosed (But rather easily and successfully treated) malady.

When identified and treated early, the cure rate is remarkably high – about 90%. If left un-diagnosed, however and after the TMJ syndrome becomes chronic, the cure rate drops drastically, and the patient may remain with some permanent symptoms.

Thus, early identification and treatment by your family dentist or a competent TMJ specialist is essential for the immediate and future well-being of the patient.