Personal Injury

When you are involved in a car accident you get to choose your own health care provider! Mitch Gries has been treating Motor Vehicle Accident Trauma and Workman’s Comp Injuries for the over 30 years.  Mitch has been successful in treating everyone of his patients because he understands that the order of the stages of rehabilitation is extremely important.

  1. Eliminate muscle spasm
  2. Restore flexibility
  3. Restore proper biomechanics
  4. Increase muscle strength
  5. Increase muscular endurance, cardiovascular training

Mitch Gries spends 75 minutes in every session reducing pain and muscle spasm, hypertonicity and ischemia, non surgically and without drugs, Typically within 6-8 weeks at 2 x’s wk. your mobility, range of motion and flexibility will be restored. Posture is very important and Mitch tries to give each Personal Injury patient the most structurally sound body possible. Restoring proper biomechanics means that you’ll be able to stand, sit, walk, work and evensleep more comfortably and naturally.

Mitch’s standards of full rehabilitation are much higher than that of most other therapists since a large portion of his clientele are professional dancers who must maintain extra ordinary bodies for a very demanding career necessitating strong flexible muscles, (movement with grace.)  Mr. Gries’s goal is to give the you back a better body than what you had prior to the accident with a 85%- 99% improvement in the most acute traumatized areas. Imagine that your vehicle with 36,000 miles was smashed in and you got back it back with 22,000 miles with fresh paint and new tires.

Whiplash: Symptoms and Treatment

  • Whiplash is a traumatic injury sustained when the head is snapped forward and back or side to side.
  • Soft tissue injury is the most common outcome of whiplash.
  • St. John Neuromuscular Therapy addresses the resulting muscular spasm and postural distortion that is the root cause of prolonged pain.
  • In most cases it is more important to treat the muscles on the front side of the cervical spine.
  • Disc herniation and nerve root compression can be avoided with proper treatment of the soft tissues of the neck.

Whiplash is most commonly associated with rear end auto accidents.  However, the same type of injury to the neck can occur from a fall, being hit or shaken, sports injury or even amusement park rides.  It is generally considered a soft tissue injury sustained when forces are directed into the cervical spine that cause extreme movements of the neck in one direction and then in the opposite direction rapidly.  In more severe cases, spinal fractures are possible.  People are most familiar with the forward and backward movement associated with whiplash but the same principals apply to side-to-side movements that would be caused in a side impact auto accident as well.  Uncorrected imbalances caused by whiplash can produce prolonged, even chronic, dysfunction of the cervical spine.  I have seen excellent recovery from whiplash accidents with proper assessment and treatment through St. John Neuromuscular Therapy.

Symptoms from whiplash injury can be appear immediately but, in most cases, occur 2-3 days after an accident.  The most common symptoms include; neck pain, headache, shoulder pain, dizziness, fatigue, temporomandibular joint syndrome, arm pain and weakness, visual disturbances, tinnitus and back pain.  In severe and chronic cases, these symptoms are considered whiplash associated disorder and can also include symptoms such as depression, anger, frustration, anxiety, stress, drug dependency, post-traumatic stress syndrome and social isolation.  We have also noted many cases of whiplash induced hypothyroidism.  In these cases, trigger points and postural distortions that resulted from trauma to the muscles caused a decrease in the function of the thyroid.  After treatment with St. John Neuromuscular Therapy, hypothyroid symptoms such as poor muscle tone, fatigue, depression and weight gain were alleviated.

According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, treatment for whiplash may include pain medications, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, antidepressants, muscle relaxants, and a cervical collar (usually worn for 2 to 3 weeks). Range of motion exercises, physical therapy, and cervical traction may also be prescribed. Supplemental heat application may relieve muscle tension.  As in any significant traumatic injury, thorough assessment for fractures or other structural damage should be made by a physician.  Our clinical experience indicates that the root cause of prolonged symptoms of whiplash remains unaddressed by the treatments mentioned above.  Since much of the pain associated with whiplash occurs in the posterior neck and upper back, a great deal of treatment is focused on these areas.  However, a substantial amount of trauma is sustained in the front of the cervical spine in this situation.  When the head is snapped back in a typical whiplash injury, the longus colli, longus capitis, sternocleidomastiod, scalenes, and anterior longitudinal ligament of the spine undergo a strain that can range from a mild sprain to a full tear of these tissues.  Because of the relative inaccessibility of these tissues, they typically go untreated.

Treatment protocols unique to St. John Neuromuscular Therapy take these very important muscles into account when dealing with whiplash pain.  The most important muscles in the neck are the longus colli and longus capitis.  Injury to these muscles, located deep in the front of the neck, can result in muscle spasm that contributes to loss of the natural curve of the cervical spine resulting in a straight or “military” neck or even a reverse curve of this region of the spine.  The subsequent pressures on the structures of the spine can result in herniated discs that compress the spinal cord and nerve roots.  Often, pain that is felt on the back side of the neck and in the head originates in the longus colli and the longus capitis.  The ability to measure imbalances in these muscles and specifically treat them is a key facet of St. John Neuromuscular Therapy’s ability to treat whiplash injury quickly and effectively.  Once the spasm in the front of the cervical spine is relieved proper alignment can be restored, relieving pain that could otherwise become chronic.     Special Thanks to Paul St. John and the St. John Clark Pain Center

Mitch Gries is able to work on a lien.
Please call Mitch Gries at 323-851-3508 or email at MitchGries@gmail.com.

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