Many of us have been involved in fender benders or rear-enders — those so-called “minor” automobile collisions that at first glance seem to involve little more than a slight muscle stiffness and a call to your insurance company. However, I’m here to tell you that these minor accidents can be a major pain in the neck or back.
Even “fender-benders” can cause injuries that can develop into pain, headaches and arthritis. Even worse, most people who have been involved in an auto accident may not even know that they’ve been hurt.The chiropractic approach to these types of injuries is to use specific chiropractic adjustments to help return spinal function.
After a thorough case history and examination, the doctor will recommend any necessary care to help restore proper motion and position of spinal bones. If caught early enough, inflammation can be reduced and scar tissue can often be minimized.
Even in slow-speed traffic collisions that result in minor damage to the vehicles involved, the bodies in those vehicles can still suffer significant trauma. Most car accidents result in what some might consider minor injuries, meaning that they are not life-threatening. This does not mean that those who survive a car accident with minor injuries will have no lasting effects; some “minor” car accident injuries can actually result in delayed onset of symptoms or long-lasting pain and suffering and decreased enjoyment of life.
Injury to the neck, or whiplash, is a common car accident injury that can happen at the slowest of speeds and results from the vehicle coming to an abrupt halt while the body actually stays in motion. The seat belt halts the body’s movement, but the neck snaps forward and back in response. The rest of the spine is involved in whiplash, too: the spine actually takes on an unnatural S-shape momentarily, pushing the lower spine out of its normal C-shaped position. The result is instant trauma to ligaments and spinal discs. Though it takes only a moment to experience whiplash, the effects can be painful and long-lasting and it is important to seek medical attention for even the slightest symptoms of whiplash, which can include tension headaches in roughly 65 percent of whiplash sufferers, as well as tightened muscles, sore spots and pain that radiates into the shoulders and down the back.
Spinal injuries are the most common injury reported in traffic collisions, aside from head injuries which account for nearly 50 percent of all car crash-related injuries.
In car crashes involving speeds over 45 mph, some trauma or injury to the spine is almost guaranteed. The tremendous, instant force of most car crashes jars the body, jolting the frame forward and backward, and from side to side. The spine absorbs a great majority of the impact involved in any traffic collision, and injuries can range from dislocation and bruising of ligaments and muscles to actual broken vertebrae.
Waldron Chiropractic specializes in helping patients who have been injured in a car crash. If you would like to get on the road to recovery, please call our office today at 425-778-9600 for your consultation.
— Dr. Matthew Waldron