Each year thousands of Martin County residents are involved in car accidents. Here are 3 reasons to choose chiropractic care after a car accident. Some car accidents cause minor damage while others cause major damage. The severity of the damage to vehicles and the severity of the injuries vary. Did you know that the vehicle […]
Each year thousands of Martin County residents are involved in car accidents. Here are 3 reasons to choose chiropractic care after a car accident.
Some car accidents cause minor damage while others cause major damage. The severity of the damage to vehicles and the severity of the injuries vary. Did you know that the vehicle crash damage does not directly correlate to the degree of occupant injury? It’s true. A study published in the Society of Automotive Engineers, 1 dispels this widely held myth. That means, even if your car accident was minor, your injuries could be serious, even life altering.
Unfortunately, it’s common for people to develop chronic issues as a result of a seemingly minor accident. What’s worse, you may not be aware that you’ve been injured immediately following the accident.
Chiropractic care is the best option for musculoskeletal injuries, including those suffered in car accidents. As a chiropractor, Dr. Danielle can treat many of these injuries without drugs or surgery. Fortunately, the injuries suffered in most minor auto accidents don’t require surgery and drugs. However, if prescription drugs and/or surgery are required to restore you to optimal functionality, Dr. Danielle will provide guidance in finding the right resources to help you achieve this goal.
Here are the top three reasons to choose chiropractic care after a car accident in Martin County, FL
#1: Imaging can’t catch micro-tears that are caused by a car accident.
Unfortunately, medical imaging such as X-rays or MRIs can’t detect the micro-tears in ligaments and muscles after a traumatic injury like those resulting from an auto accident. These microscopic tears in the muscle are why you may wake up with severe pain the day after an accident. Whiplash is a soft tissue neck injury that occurs when the neck snaps back and forth in a rapid motion. That rapid snapping back and forth causes microscopic tears in the neck muscles.
Soft-tissue injuries (a.k.a. micro-tears in ligaments and muscles) like whiplash can take a long time to heal. One study found that more than 70 percent of people who visited the emergency room after a car accident were still in pain six weeks later. Other researchers have noted that nearly half of whiplash sufferers continue to experience symptoms three months later, while 25 percent remain symptomatic for six months.2
Traumatic injuries such as those suffered in a car accident often include micro-tears and micro lesions. These cause inflammation which in turn causes pain. 3 Studies show that chiropractic adjustments help the body release anti-inflammatory Interleukin 6 (IL-6)4. Interleukin 6 (IL-6) plays an integral role in the body’s healing ability, including trauma, burns, cancers and infections.5
#2: Chiropractic Care After a Car Accident Helps Heal Internal Scar Tissues
When you hear the word “scar tissue” you might think of the scar from a nasty fall off your bike when you were young. Your body also forms this special type of tissue inside your body when your ligaments and muscles are injured. Just as the scar tissue you see on your skin doesn’t look or act like your undamaged skin, the scar tissue inside your body doesn’t have the same elasticity or mobility of uninjured soft tissue.
When scar tissue forms in the ligaments, especially those in your neck or back, it can lead to long term pain and reduced mobility. Scar tissue continues to grow and change throughout the recovery process which may take from twelve to eighteen months.6 Prompt chiropractic care after a car accident is very effective at remodeling scar tissue. Chiropractic treatment and stretching of scar tissue helps align the collagen fibers, allowing it tolerate daily activities. 7
Studies show that car accident victims treated within one week of their accident saw the best overall improvement. 8 Many chiropractors refer to this time period as the “golden week” because the inflammatory reaction which occurs during this period, if left unchecked, will produce scars and adhesions that make future management more difficult.
#3: Chiropractic Care After a Car Accident Releases Pain Relieving Hormones
Studies also show that chiropractic care helps release pain reducing hormones.9 These hormones provide natural pain relief from both acute and chronic pain. They will help relieve the pain from the acute injuries suffered in a car accident. Fortunately, they don’t stop there! They will also help any other areas that were causing pain before the accident.
Unfortunately, turning to pain pills can actually make pain worse in the long run. Contrary to marketing messages that imply otherwise, pain medications do not speed up the healing process. Pain medications (both OTC and prescription) can be very beneficial for the first 7 – 10 days after a traumatic injury. Used in the short term, these can provide symptomatic relief while chiropractic care breaks up scar tissue and adhesions, relieving stiffness, pain and the discomfort it causes.
We’re learning that you won’t find the solution to pain – even chronic pain – in a pill. Not only are opioid medications dangerous and addictive, they can actually cause your pain to worsen. Studies show that when you use an opioid, it sets off a chain of immune signals in the spinal cord that amplify pain rather than dulling it, even after the drug leaves the body. 10
Prompt Chiropractic Care is Key
The key to optimal recovery after an auto accident is prompt chiropractic care. Chiropractic care will allow you to continue to stay active after your car accident.
If you or someone you know has been in a car accident and you need chiropractic treatment, call 855-509-5400 to schedule an appointment.
It’s natural to focus on the extent of your physical injuries after a car accident. After all, even in a minor fender bender, your body is exposed to powerful and violent forces. Even if you were lucky enough to escape the accident without life threatening physical injuries, you might be surprised by the flood of emotions that can come after a car accident.
It’s natural to experience strong emotions such as shock, guilt, grief, helplessness, confusion, and fear after a motor vehicle accident. Some patients report continuing to feel afraid even though they know the danger posed by the accident has passed. Others report experiencing mood swings. Some report periods of crying uncontrollably. The feelings of sadness or depression after a car accident are very common, and can be intense. Be sure to tell your treating chiropractor or physician if these feelings are stopping you from doing your normal daily activities.
Another natural and common reaction to your car accident is increased anxiety. You may also feel anger, irritability, and agitation. These feelings may be directed at the other driver (even if you were at fault) or you may take your anger out on your loved ones, friends and co-workers.
On the other end of the spectrum are feelings of guilt, shame, and self-blame (even if you weren’t at fault). You may find yourself ruminating on what you could have done or not done to prevent the accident.
Immediately after your car accident, it is normal to feel a flood of emotions, like those listed above. However, if you are still battling these post-accident emotional symptoms more than 3 months after your accident, you may be suffering from PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder). This is a condition that can develop after any type of traumatizing event.
Car accidents can trigger PTSD symptoms including experiencing flashbacks of the accident. In fact, research 1 has shown that an estimated 39.2% of motor vehicle accident survivors develop PTSD as a result.
Many suffering with PTSD also simultaneously have an intense fear of driving and/or a related anxiety disorder.
Returning to driving after a car accident
If your injuries won’t prevent you from driving for the rest of your life, at some point you’ll have to get back behind the wheel of a car. You’ll probably feel some anxiety the first time behind the wheel. You may even feel anxiety riding as a passenger in the car. Rest assured that this is natural.
Once back behind the wheel, you’ll probably find that you drive more cautiously than before. If your accident was at night, you may experience extra high anxiety around night driving.
If you’ve been in a car accident, you probably have questions. Fortunately, Dr. Danielle Hurd, DC of Advanced Wellness Solutions has many of the answers you need including:
- Is what I’m experiencing normal?
- How long will it be until I feel better?
The Chiropractor You Choose Makes a Difference
Dr. Danielle Hurd, DC knows first hand the emotional aftermath of surviving a car crash. While attending USF to obtain her BS in biomedical science, she was injured in a car accident– a near head on collision on part of SR 60 that is only 2 lanes. The other driver had tried to pass a semi-truck on his way to work. It was early morning, so when she saw the other driver’s headlights emerge from behind the semi-truck, she veered off the road quickly. Had she not reacted as quickly as she did, the other driver would have hit her head on. Instead, his pick-up truck struck her just behind the driver’s door, tearing a hole in the rear door of the mini-van she was driving.
When the police arrived at the scene of the accident, they had been told they were responding to a fatality accident. They were relieved to see her standing outside her vehicle. Even though the vehicle she was driving was obviously a total loss, she thought she wasn’t injured immediately following the accident. Only when the adrenaline rush wore off did she realize how seriously she was injured.
The injuries from Dr. Danielle’s accident caused trigeminal neuralgia, which is described as the most excruciating pain known to humanity. While her injuries and resulting pain forced her to leave school for a semester, it helped her to choose her career. Thanks to the care she received from her chiropractor (who encouraged her to attend Palmer College of Chiropractic), she was able to return to USF the next semester and complete her bachelor’s degree. She went on to graduate in 2014 from Palmer College of Chiropractic in Port Orange Florida.
This is why Dr. Danielle makes it a point to create a soothing, nurturing office environment at Advanced Wellness Solutions. She’s had first-hand experience and understands the intense feelings that are very common—and very real – when recovering from an auto accident. It’s why her office has not one but two “office dogs.” Wanda and William both seem to know when patients need emotional support. However, they’re kept confined behind a glass door into the front desk in case patients are afraid of dogs.
The doctor you choose makes a difference. If you or someone you know has been in a car accident, call 855-509-5400 to make an appointment with Dr. Danielle Hurd, DC.
Florida has a reputation for “bad” and “aggressive” drivers. For those who live or work in Stuart, Florida, if you haven’t been in a car accident recently, you probably know someone who has. Just because we live in paradise doesn’t mean life here is perfect – or predictable.
Being in a car accident, even a minor one, can be traumatic and frightening. The moments during a car crash are often violent. Your body is subjected to extreme forces that can affect your body in unexpected ways. You can be injured in a seemingly minor fender bender.
If you’re able to escape your vehicle after the accident, you may think you weren’t seriously injured. It’s important to know that it could be weeks – or even months – before the full extent of your injuries are known. Even if you go to the hospital immediately following your car accident, some injuries like whiplash, traumatic brain injury and even spinal cord injury may not be immediately evident, even with appropriate imaging!
Following a car accident, it may take time for you to begin thinking clearly enough to make sound judgments and important decisions. That’s why we’ve created this checklist to help.
#1: DO NOT LEAVE THE SCENE OF AN ACCIDENT.
Even if it’s a minor fender bender, stay at the scene. If it’s your fault, stay at the scene. Even if your car is the only one involved in the accident, stay at the scene. If you leave, you could face felony charges.
#2: CALL THE POLICE.
Even if there are no apparent injuries, you should still call the police. You’ll need a police report to file a claim with your insurance company.
#3: TAKE PICTURES.
Use your phone to take pictures of the vehicles and the scene while you wait for the police to arrive. If you have visible injuries, you should document them with photographs as well. The worst case scenario is you won’t need these images. It’s better to have these images and not need them rather than need these images and not have them.
#4: WHEN THE POLICE ARRIVE.
Tell the investigating officer(s) exactly what happened. When asked if you’re injured, say that you’re not sure. This is the truth. There’s no way you can know immediately after your accident if you were injured.
As your accident was happening, your body released a burst of the hormone adrenaline. This hormone decreases your ability to feel pain, increases your strength, and sharpens your mental focus. (If you watched the accident happen in slow motion, you can thank adrenaline for that.) Because of this adrenaline rush, it may be days before you realize the extent of your injuries.
#5: GET WITNESS INFORMATION.
If there are witnesses, you should get their contact information.
#6: SEEK MEDICAL ATTENTION.
You should be seen by a doctor, ER physician or chiropractor within 14 days of your car accident. You should do this even if you don’t feel any pain or soreness. Many injuries – especially whiplash and head trauma are not immediately apparent. You can sustain serious, life altering injuries in seemingly minor accidents. If you lost consciousness or were dazed – even a short period of time – you may have suffered a concussion or traumatic brain injury (TBI). Even if you just “bumped your head” in the accident, that minor injury can be deadly if it caused bleeding in the brain. The symptoms of TBI may not appear for weeks – or even months. That’s why it is so important to see a physician or chiropractor after a car accident.
#7: CONTACT YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY
Car owners in Florida are covered under PIP, or No-Fault insurance. This means that you can receive treatments for your injuries even if you were at fault for the accident. In order to activate your PIP insurance benefits, you have to file a claim with the insurance company and you must schedule an appointment with a doctor or chiropractor within 14 days of the accident. Your PIP insurance benefits will cover 80% of the cost of this visit.
You should know that you don’t have to hire an attorney to access these benefits and an attorney is not required to receive treatment for your injuries.
If your injuries are serious, you may need more medical care than is provided by your PIP benefits. If this is the case, Dr. Danielle Hurd, DC will give you the names of attorneys who expertly handle personal injury cases.
Finally, don’t be upset if your primary care physician refuses to treat you for injuries suffered in a car accident. You wouldn’t be upset if your primary care physician didn’t want to perform open heart surgery on you. After a car accident, it’s important to see a medical professional who is experienced working with the severe trauma that can result from even low impact car crashes. Chiropractors receive specialized training in treating the musculoskeletal injuries common in car accidents.
If you or someone you know has been involved in a car accident, call us today at 855-509-5400.