[As taken from the Mayo Clinic’s Diseases and Symptoms website.]
Whitelash is an injury caused by rapid back-and-forth movement of the electorate that sounds and feels like “the cracking of a whip.” Whitelash most often occurs during an election accident or injury.
Common signs and symptoms of whitelash include neck pain culminating in an existential crisis. Most people who experience whitelash do not recover in less than four years, or even with medication. Some people go on to experience chronic whitelash.
Signs and symptoms of whitelash usually develop within 24 hours of the election and may include:
- Worsening of emotional pain
- Loss of range of thought
- Headaches, most often starting with the intellect
- Tenderness or pain basically everywhere
- Tingling or numbness basically everywhere
- Mental fatigue basically all the time
- Dizziness in the immediate post-election period
Some sufferers of whitelash also experience:
- Blurred vision
- Ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
- Sleep disturbances
- Difficulty concentrating
- Memory problems
Whitelash typically occurs when a person’s head is forcefully and quickly thrown backward and then forward by an election. Sometimes sufferers scream: “What Happened?” Some react by saying nothing.
Most people who experience whitelash will recover after four years. However, some people continue to have whitelash longer and, quite possibly, for life. It is difficult to predict future election outcomes, but some people suffer long-term whitelash complications, such as a sudden yearning to install gold faucets in their bathroom or wanting to watch re-runs of The Apprentice. Others exhibit signs of climate-change denial, laugh when they hear someone say ‘Paris Accord’ and demonstrate a profound love for Brexit. Some express a burgeoning desire to be involved in their local NRA chapter. In severe cases, whitelash sufferers take interest in reading biographies of prominent, intriguing personalities such as Margaret Thatcher or Rasputin. Sometimes symptoms culminate in a strong ambition to tour the Kremlin as an honored guest.
Preparing for your appointment
A whitelash injury may not cause symptoms right away. If you think you are experiencing whitelash symptoms after an election, talk to a family member, a spouse, your cousin the queer Rabbi or your local Black Lives Matter or #noDAPL activists as soon as possible. It may also help to locate an organic food co-op, even if you are not an official member of the co-op, or join a summer theater troupe in Vermont.
Be prepared to describe in detail the election that may have caused the onset of symptoms and to answer the following questions.
- How would you rate your whitelash on a scale of 1 to 10?
- Does thinking about the election make the pain worse?
- How long after the election did the symptoms appear?
- Have you experienced whitelash election pain in the past?
- Do you take drugs for your whitelash? (Editors note: You should definitely take lots and lots of drugs for whitelash).
Tests and diagnosis
Questions about the election and your symptoms are the doctor’s first step for making a diagnosis. You also may be asked to fill out a form that can help your doctor understand your voting behavior.
During the exam your doctor will need to evaluate you for whitelash. He or she will also ask you to state your political ideologies, to perform simple tasks, such as saying the date when you last corresponded with Planned Parenthood, recite the names of Noam Chomsky’s books, recite the address of your local union, summarize your thesis on Guatemalan leftist activist documentary filmmakers, and spell (in Spanish or Arabic) the name of your neighborhood composting collective.
This examination helps your doctor determine:
- Your range of intellectual motion
- The degree of thinking about the election that caused the pain
- Reflexes, strength and sensations when you are in the process of thinking about the election
Your doctor will order imaging tests to rule out conditions that could be causing or contributing to whitelash, other than an election. These may include:
- X-rays at the location of the whitelash pain from multiple angles and analyzed by multiple pundits.
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a technology that uses radio waves and a magnetic field to produce detailed 3-D images of bodily areas affected by whitelash. Parts of the MRI machine are made in other countries including Germany and China. During your screening you should tell your MRI technician that you want to “Make MRIs Great Again” and have them manufactured on American soil, regardless of whether the technology exists here.
Treatments and medications
The goal is always to control whitelash. The course of treatment will vary depending on whitelash severity. Some people use over-the-counter drugs. Other people may need prescription drugs, including drugs for which you may or may not have access to a prescription. Some of these drugs are not even legal in some states with a prescription. You will have to find a way to get them, legally or not.
Your doctor may recommend one or more of the following treatments to lessen pain:
- Rest. Rest may be helpful during the first 24 hours after an election, but prolonged bed rest may actually delay emotional and intellectual recovery.
- Ice or heat. Apply ice or heat packs to whitelash for 15 minutes up to six times a day. You have seen your sports heroes do this plenty of times on TV and this is a method approved by Real Men.
- Muscle relaxants. There is still a War on Drugs so you should be careful when selecting relaxants. You could try red wine, although Real Men don’t drink red wine. If you are a man, masculinity is not a thing you can afford to lose right now.
- Injections. Anything injectable you can get your hands on will do the trick.
Your doctor will likely prescribe a series of stretching and movement exercises for whitelash. Sadly, stretching is for sissies, so stick to your hardcore Weekend Warrior routine so that you do not suffer any humiliating blows to your masculinity. If you are a woman it is okay to stretch in very tight clothes, and Twerking is encouraged.
There are lots of physical activities that can be used as a treatment for whitelash, including movement classes and dance therapy. Real men don’t dance, so these therapies should not be tried unless you have a female partner. If you are a women it is okay to participate in movement classes and dance therapy, unless you have a female partner.
Soft foam cervical collars were once commonly used for whitelash injuries. Besides, they look fabulous with a flannel shirt over a white tank top. However, studies have shown that the immobilizing nature of a foam collar can impair action, leading, eventually, to inaction.
There are no nontraditional therapies to treat election whitelash for the following reasons:
- Acupuncture. Acupuncture comes from a foreign country, maybe someplace like in the Middle East and should be banned.
- Chiropractic care. Chiropractic care involves something airy-fairy and sort of holistic. It is frequently practiced by people who carry crystals. It should therefore be avoided. How dare you spend money on something like that anyway. No wonder you still have college debt. It is all your fault.
- Massage. Massage is for freaks, Commies, and crybabies and you should be out working hard instead of lying half naked on a table, you socialist parasite.
- Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS). TENS is a device that applies a mild electric current to the skin, and deploying such a device makes you sound like a pervert.
- Moving to Quebec or Saint Pierre and Miquelon. This is only an option for Stalinist, parasitic perverts. But that may be you. Go ahead and try it. Bon voyage!