Chiropractors and Car Accidents
The medical community is woefully undertrained in diagnosing and treating soft tissue injuries. That may not sound like a big deal but to a chiropractor who understands the seriousness that whiplash induced injuries from a car accident can possess, it is a VERY big deal. Car accidents are one of the top causes of injury in the U.S. Chiropractors, MDs, teachers, police, sanitation workers; essentially everybody drives a car. As a result, car accidents are very common and thus so are injuries sustained from them. The problem is that very few people understand their potential severity. This is far worse of a problem when chiropractors and lawyers working with most of these whiplash induced injuries do not realize their significance either.
It’s a challenge, to say the least, to find a chiropractor or a lawyer who is willing to go the extra distance for a patient with what is often labeled as “just a soft tissue injury”. You might as well say they have “just a concussion”. Concussions were often thought to be far less significant than they are. Even now there is new information coming light to about their severity, especially with repeated occurrences. But the lasting effects, where big enough for numerous retired professional football players that they won a $765 million settlement over concussion-related brain injuries they sustain during their careers!
Soft tissue injury, is it a big deal?
The majority of your body is made up of “soft tissue”. Your fat, skin, ligaments, tendons, fibrous tissues, fascia and synovial membranes (what your joints are made of) make up your connective tissue. This is the stuff that literally holds you together. The muscles, nerves, and blood vessels are also soft tissue which is considered non-connective. For the most part, these tissues can heal well and without a lot of problems depending on the type of tissue and the severity of the damage. A chiropractor is the best trained professional to help evaluate and treat most of the injuries, specifically as they relate to the spine. Some chiropractors take it further still and specialize in car accident related soft tissue (whiplash) injuries of the spine.
Medical doctors are often the first and only source of examination for injuries caused by whiplash.
- They cannot treat beyond surgery or drugs. Prescribing painkillers and or muscle relaxers. Sometimes they may even refer to a physical therapist. Typically this is not the case as most patients see only an E.R. doctor who is not going to follow up with the patient. Nor should they. They work with emergencies and if they have properly diagnosed you with a non-emergency whiplash induced injury then there is no need for them to see you again. Unfortunately, PTs do not have the same training, as it relates to the spine, to treat ligament injuries in the spine, which brings me to my next point.
Ligaments to heal very well.
- Everyone understand this point when it comes to NFL players injuries and ACL. The Anterior Cruciate Ligament is a common ligament to tear for football players. An ACL injury will often take six to nine MONTHS to heal. Some will never be 100% after the injury. This is you KNEE. YOUR KNEE. How much more valuable and potentially dangerous or debilitating do you thing injuring a ligament in your CERVICAL SPINE (neck) is? You don’t have to be a chiropractor to know that the spinal cord in your neck is kind of important. This is why the American Medical Association has made it very clear that a measurable injury to the ligaments in your neck carries a very high “impairment rating”. A rating which is far higher than many broken bones. Yes, a soft tissue injury from whiplash is more severe than many hard tissue injuries!
The pain and symptoms come later.
- If you break a femur, you know right NOW that you have a big problem. Breaking a bone is immediately painful and often very painful and once is heals, assuming it is set properly first, most people with never feel any symptoms. The same cannot always be said for ligament injuries, especially those in the neck. The reason for this is that very often the bones connected to the damaged ligaments are not set back in place the same way a broken bone may need to be. See reason #1 above to a reminder of why that is. You have to see a chiropractor that specializes in the structural correction. To have any hope of preventing pain and symptoms like neck pain, headaches, migraines, back pain, etc. from plaguing you in the future. You will inevitably be at a chiropractor’s office in the future for these types of problems. That is if you don’t see a chiropractor when you first have an injury from whiplash. The difference being the problem will me much worse later on and it will be on your dime instead of the person responsible.
If you or someone you know gets into a car accident, the only way to prevent a future of neck pain, headaches, migraines, low back pain or other whiplash related pains, is to have them evaluated by the appropriate chiropractor. Your chiropractor Greenville, NC is at Corrective Chiropractic. Chiropractor Dr. Bret Wickstrom is here to help anyone in or Greenville, NC and beyond with their whiplash and soft tissue injuries. Call today for a consult.