In 2016, I was involved in an auto accident on a Los Angeles freeway. My car was hit from behind while slowing in traffic to a complete stop. The car that hit me was travelling roughly 25-35 miles per hour; it appeared that the driver was looking down, possibly at a cell phone, just before the impact. The screeching of his brakes tells me that he was driving too fast for traffic and that he only suddenly saw the slow down. At impact, my head snapped forward and then quickly back; I was looking over my right shoulder, so my left front neck took the brunt of the recoil. Because my children were in the car with me, I immediately went into fight-or-flight, my adrenaline pumping throughout my body keeping me alert, efficient, and ready to protect the pups. This hormone surge kept me from feeling any pain at all for about three days. Then that morning I woke up and was unable to move my neck without pain. My neck felt stiff, sore, and barely liftable.
I went immediately to my chiropractor in Los Angeles. He assessed me and adjusted me. I did the muscle work on myself at home. We kept up this protocol for 3-4 weeks. Everything felt fine. Then three months passed and I started noticing tingling into the first three fingers on my left hand. Because my neck did not hurt, I thought perhaps I needed to stretch more. I would especially feel the tingling while on the stationary bike at the gym. Then one day I felt in lying in bed. I was reading sitting up against a pillow, with my head in slight flexion, and the tigling was very strong. I had to shake out my hand to dissipate the feeling. This feeling persisted for another two weeks, sometimes the same, sometimes worse. Then my neck began to hurt
I took myself to the chiropractic office in Los Angles for the new neck pain. We found that I had a very sore region on the spine at C5, the fifth cervical (neck) vertebra. Pushing on it caused increased tingling into my left hand. The tingling was not always constant. There were moments where it lasted awhile, but it almost always got better over time. The tingling was always worse on flexing my neck or jutting forward my chin. I was treated with a chiropractic adjustment to my C5, muscle release work, and light stretching.
I had to continue on weekly care for several months. The neck pain was relieved rather quickly, but the tingling into my fingers took significantly longer. Tingling would almost always subside after the chiropractic adjustment, but it would return days later, so the rationale of treatment was to continue bringing proper motion into the spinal segment, and over time my neck healed.
I had never experienced that type of neurological symptom before. Of course, I knew all about it, first from books, then from clinical practice. But that one year period from late 2016 to 2017 I learned exactly what it was like to feel neck pain and tingling down an arm following an auto accident. I got to understand from a practical standpoint the power of chiropractic care in healing neck pain, herniated disks, strained muscles, spasmed muscles, and radiculopathy (numbness and tingling into an arm or leg). What really astonished me was the duration it took to heal completely. What that told me was that I might have been underestimating my own treatment duration recommendations. How many people, I wondered, continue to suffer from tingling fingers following a short round of chiropractic (and in some cases only physical therapy) after an auto accident… I understood from my own experience what it takes to remove neurological insult and induce complete healing from cervical disk herniations or whiplash injuries.
If you are in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, or West Hollywood and have neck pain, or tingling in an arm, hand or fingers, following an auto accident, please contact my office at 323-359-1032