Lingering pain can be one scary symptom in the aftermath of a car accident. Here is a guide to treating pain that results from an auto collision.
Open an Insurance Claim
The first thing that you should do after a car accident is file an insurance claim. This will ensure that the insurance company is aware of your accident (and any potential injuries) before you seek medical treatment; it can be harder to link your injuries to the crash later on if the timing is reversed. When you file an insurance report, be as detailed as possible; document the damage to your car and person with both words and images when possible.
Get a Checkup
Visiting a chiropractor at a location like Smith Chiropractic after your accident is an important step, even if you aren't experiencing pain (but especially if you are). There are many latent injuries that can occur to the neck and spine that may get worse over time if they aren't corrected right away.
Your chiropractor will use x-rays to document the condition of your neck and spine. They will make measurements to see how your spinal vertebrae align with one another. In a whiplash injury, some of your spinal vertebra may be pushed forward, causing risk for a potential injury, such as a thrown disc or pinched nerve. The vertebrae in your neck can be especially vulnerable, since the neck often whips forward with the force of a collision. The small neck bones may shift a higher percentage out of place, which can be dangerous, even if the distance of the shift is small. After your checkup, the chiropractor will take any immediate interventions needed to protect your spinal health.
Once your chiropractor has made sure there is no urgent injury to deal with, you can get down to the business of dealing with car accident pain. There are a few interventions that may help. For one, a spinal adjustment can help to take the pressure off of certain areas of the spine and reduce pain. You might also get some chiropractic massage treatments that focus on relieving tension in the muscles that support your spine. Your doctor should also do a full-body examination to reveal hidden areas of pain. For instance, you might not have noticed certain pain spots because your spine hasn't yet been stretched or compressed in a certain direction. By treating the spine holistically, your chiropractor will help you to slowly eliminate the painful effects of a car crash.