Most of us ride in a car every day of the week, and although we take precautions to stay safe on the road, the occasional accident is not uncommon. According to the government sources, over three million Americans are injured in car accidents each year. The hard truth is that many of these accidents result in injuries, and some of those injuries have permanent effects.
No matter what the specific nature of your injuries may be, you might find yourself looking for treatment options. In many cases, physical therapy can only take you so far down the road to recovery. Surgery is reserved for serious cases where surgical intervention has a clear advantage. Pharmaceutical drugs can offer a temporary fix, but the long-term effects are not desirable. What about chiropractic care? Can this type of treatment help me after a car accident? This is a common question for people who have been injured in a car accident.
We can’t say that chiropractic care will bring meaningful results for every single person who has been injured in a car accident – but we can say that the nature of many car accident-related injuries makes chiropractic treatment a viable option in a great many cases.
One of the most common injuries sustained in car accidents is whiplash, which often happens when a driver is “rear-ended.” The body of a driver or passenger is suddenly pushed forward while the head moves backward. This can lead to soft tissue injuries to the neck and cervical spine. There are many different angles and types of collisions that can result in whiplash, and the effects can be mild and temporary to severe and seemingly permanent. The common symptoms including pain (both lingering and acute), restricted range of motion, pain with particular head movements, headaches with pain around the head and neck area, and a feeling of tightness in the shoulders, neck, and/or head.
There can be other symptoms associated with whiplash as well, including psychological symptoms that develop over time, but the physical symptoms are usually what prompts people to seek a form of treatment that haven’t tried before.
Chiropractic treatment for whiplash involves finding and addressing the underlying imbalances and misalignments in the spinal column, as well as in the soft tissue around the head and neck. Gentle adjustments can restore the injured area to its natural, pre-accident alignment. Very often, this results in a dramatic if not complete resolution of symptoms. Some people have very good results after one treatment, while others need several treatments to reap the full benefits.
It’s important to note that chiropractic treatment for whiplash is not a “one size fits all” solution. A skilled chiropractor will take many things into account before starting your treatment, including the timeframe of the injury and your healing progress so far. As your treatment progresses, the adjustments performed by your chiropractor may change. Having a good level of communication, and a high level of trust in the training and expertise of your chiropractor, is absolutely essential for getting the best result.