Why It’s Important to See a Chiropractor Following a Car Accident – Even a Minor One
It’s common, after a car accident–even a minor one–to get out of the car and walk around and think, “I’m fine. Thank goodness I wasn’t hurt.”
After a crash, you can experience a big surge of adrenaline that can act almost like a numbing agent, making you feel less pain and leading you to think you are fine. However, many times, that pain will kick in later, once the adrenaline has left your system and your body calms down.
Many times, the pain won’t present itself until the next day, or even a few days later. All of a sudden, your neck can feel incredibly stiff and sore, and it may be extremely painful to turn your head from side to side, indicating whiplash. A similar feeling may happen in your back, arms and legs. You may notice red marks on your neck and chest where your seatbelt stopped you from going through the windshield. And for some reason, your abdomen may be sore, like you got punched in the stomach, even if you don’t see any obvious signs of bruising.
That’s because your body actually experienced a more traumatic event than you even realize, in the form of three separate collisions.
One car crash actually adds up to three separate collisions that your body experiences, within fractions of a second of each other. Those are:
- The physical collision of cars causes your car to buckle and bend as it hits something and comes to an abrupt stop.
- Your body collides with something in the interior of your car, such as the steering wheel or strap of your seatbelt.
- Your body’s internal organs hit the wall of your chest or your skeleton.
Seeing a chiropractor following a car crash can help significantly reduce pain and discomfort injuries that you may not know about immediately.
Reducing inflammation. Common injuries following a car crash — one that is not detectable by an X-ray — are micro-tears in the ligaments and muscles. This can lead to painful and uncomfortable inflammation in the body. An adjustment from a chiropractor can relieve tension and realign your spine, thereby reducing back pain and stiffness as well as inflammation.
Prevent internal scar tissue. Pain medication can help following a car accident, but it can sometimes mask a more serious problem such as the formation of internal scar tissue. Chiropractic care can help prevent scar tissue from forming and relieve pain without the need for pain medications, which can become addictive, by addressing the root cause of the pain and healing it naturally.
Restoring range of motion. Pain and inflammation can cause uncomfortable stiffness that is often not helped by pain medication. A chiropractic adjustment can restore blood flow to all your internal organs and remobilize your spine, which can even speed up the healing process and help you to get moving again without discomfort.
Catching problems urgent care or your physician may miss. It’s not uncommon for people to go to the hospital or be seen by their primary care physician and be cleared of injuries following a car crash, yet still continue to experience pain after they go home.
Urgent care and primary doctors often look only at the “big picture,” but they can miss the more subtle causes of pain such as inflammation, a slightly misaligned spine and more, and merely prescribe pain medication that doesn’t get to the root cause. Your chiropractor is uniquely qualified to catch these often undetectable injuries and treat them, sometimes even without the need for any medication at all.
As an added benefit, seeking the care of a chiropractor following a car accident can speed up the processing of your car insurance claim? Particularly if the accident was the other driver’s fault, seeking treatment immediately can often help ensure you receive the compensation you are due by obtaining documentation from the chiropractor.
Putting off seeing a doctor and/or chiropractor following a car accident can often end up being a mistake. Avoiding treatment can often only extend the amount of time you are in pain, or even allow subtle injuries to worsen, leading to long-term pain and discomfort.
If you have any questions about an injury or car accident, or even just your body’s regular health and wellness, please don’t hesitate to contact Ashburn Family Chiropractic, where we will treat you like family and help get you back in full health!