Chiropractic care after a car accident can be more than just helpful; depending on the injuries received, it could be crucial. For instance, if you have back pain or neck pain after being involved in a car accident, this could mean you have a spinal or whiplash injury. Not getting proper care after a car accident can lead to longer recovery times and even worse long-term injuries. Getting chiropractic care can also be a great alternative to painkillers and muscle relaxers to help with back injuries. According to the American Chiropractic Association, chiropractors are the highest-rated healthcare practitioner for back pain treatments. (1)
A common car accident injury is when the musculoskeletal system gets knocked out of proper alignment because of the force of the accident, causing back and neck pain. A whiplash injury can happen from the force of a rear-impact accident that causes the sharp movement of the cervical spine backward and forward. This incident will knock the spine out of its alignment and strain the neck muscles causing pain, soreness, and stiffness.
What is chiropractic care?
Chiropractic care is mostly used to diagnose and treat auto accident injuries in the musculoskeletal system. Treatment consists of work on the spine, skeletons, ligaments, muscles, and other connecting tissue that helps the body recover or minimize pain after a car accident injury.
Types of chiropractic care for car accidents
One of the most common types of injuries that occurs during a car accident is whiplash. A chiropractor will focus on reducing the inflammation of the neck and give suggestions on how to speed the healing process up. For example, the chiropractor may recommend that you use light neck support or that you apply an ice pack to help reduce the inflammation. Therapeutic ultrasound is also a common treatment for neck pain caused by whiplash. When applied to soft tissues and joints, the sound waves are a form of micro-massage which may help reduce swelling, increase blood flow, and decrease pain, stiffness, and muscle spasms.
Manual therapy is used by chiropractors to treat injured muscles and ligaments, helping to speed up the recovery. Examples of manual therapy techniques include therapeutic massage, trigger point therapy, instrument-assisted soft tissue therapy, and manual joint stretching and resistance techniques. Stretching is a very important part of manual therapy because it helps keep tissues flexible, increases mobility, and protects you from new injuries
Spinal manipulation involves three different techniques: the flexion-distraction technique, the instrument-assisted technique, and the specific spinal manipulation technique.
• Flexion-distraction technique: This technique is hands-on and involves gentle spinal manipulation to treat bulging or herniated discs, which can become aggravated due to whiplash. In order to reduce pain and inflammation, the chiropractor may use a slow pumping action on the herniated disc. A study published by the Journal of Physical Therapy Science showed that flexion-distraction therapy is used for over 50% of chiropractic treatments in clinical practice. (2)
• Instrument-assisted manipulation: Using a specialized hand-held tool, the chiropractor will apply force to the spine without thrusting. This technique is most suitable for older patients who have been involved in a car accident yet also suffer from degenerative joint syndrome.
• Specific spinal manipulation: When it comes to specific spinal manipulation, the chiropractor will identify spinal joints with abnormal or restricted motion. The chiropractor uses a thrusting technique to restore normal motion to the joint. This gentle thrusting technique is effective because it stretches the soft tissue and triggers the nervous system to restore normal motion to joints in the spine.
Interferential electrical stimulation, stimulation made by the interception of two electrical mediums of varying frequencies that work together to successfully stimulate large impulse fibers, helps to decrease inflammation and intercepts the pain signals being sent to the spinal cord.
Seeking immediate chiropractic care will help support your body’s natural healing process and help you avoid chronic pain or other health problems. Path Medical is experienced in using chiropractic treatment to help patients recover from car accidents. Call 1-800-411-PAIN and get the help you need! We will refer you to the attorneys that will fight to get you the compensation you deserve and the medical attention you need. If you have been hurt in an accident, call 1-800-411-PAIN, and we will guide you in finding you the best medical and legal professionals.