Car accidents are “exciting” events, but not in the way a new roller coaster is exciting or the way that much-anticipated vacation is exciting. They are physically exciting for the human body, which usually translates to a big rush of adrenaline that can mask the pain for hours, if not days after a crash.
It’s not uncommon for people to get into a car accident and exit their vehicle saying, “I’m okay, I’m not hurt.” If they don’t have broken bones or a big cut, they may automatically assume they’re okay, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t injured. Whenever you’re in a car accident, you should seek medical treatment right away, even if you don’t think you’re hurt.
Why? The reasons are twofold: it’s important to make sure you’re okay and it’s necessary for your personal injury claim. If you fail to seek medical attention promptly, whether it’s from an ER, your primary care physician, or a chiropractor, the insurance company can argue that you weren’t hurt so your claim should be denied.
ER vs. Seeing a Chiropractor
Certain injuries are easy to spot, such as a broken bone, head trauma, airbag burns, or a cut that is bleeding. In those cases, you should definitely go directly to the emergency room after a crash. But if you don’t have any obvious injuries such as those mentioned above, that doesn’t mean you aren’t injured. As the adrenaline starts to wear off, you may start noticing headaches, neck stiffness, backaches, and range of motion problems – all of these are signs that you are in fact injured.
If you go to an emergency room and nothing is broken but you start to experience pain, you should see a chiropractor right away. Some injuries are difficult to spot, such as herniated disks, concussions, pinched nerves, whiplash, and soft tissue injuries.
In most situations, it’s ideal to visit the ER and then see a chiropractor
immediately afterward. This is because chiropractors are different than
ER physicians and they specialize in treating injuries to the neck and back.
Are You Experiencing Pain?
One of the most common injuries sustained in car accidents is whiplash. If your neck is stiff and in a lot of pain, it’s highly likely that you sustained injuries to your neck. Whiplash occurs when a sudden impact causes the neck to jerk backward and then forwards beyond the neck’s normal range of motion. The symptoms associated with whiplash include:
- Neck pain
- Neck stiffness
- Blurred vision
- The neck has a reduced range of motion
- Arm or shoulder pain, or both
- Pain in the lower back
To recap: As a general rule, whenever you’re in a car accident, it’s wise to see a chiropractor. While emergency medical attention may come first, you should also see a chiropractor as soon as possible. Within 24 hours of the crash is ideal, but we don’t recommend waiting for longer than 72 hours. The sooner you seek treatment, the better for your body.
Chiropractic treatment can go a long way in relieving pain, restoring mobility, and promoting long-term healing. If you do not see a chiropractor or if you wait too long, non-invasive treatments like chiropractic care may no longer work and surgery may be your only option.
Injured in a car accident? Contact The Zendeh Del Law Firm, PLLC to file a claim!