Auto Accidents

A minor auto accident?

Even a minor automobile accident can have major ill effects on your health. It may be weeks, months, or even years before the problem shows itself. But, by then, it may be too late to prevent your greatest loss – your health. Often people believe the only damage that occurs is at the time of the accident. However there continues to be more damage days or months later. If the muscles are tight, not allowing the joints to move or compressing the spine/discs this may cause excessive wear. If there is too much motion after the excessive amounts forceful motion during the accident the joint may end up moving too much (due to ligament stretching or tearing) also resulting in too much wear on the joints and discs. This also leads to an inflammatory response, which can cause further breakdown of the surrounding soft tissues and permanent injury and scar tissue formation.

The collision and your spinal health

Consider for a moment that the average head weighs between 7 and 11 pounds (approximately the weight of some bowling balls) and sits on the most flexible-and fragile-part of the spine – the neck. Although the neck is relatively short and is easily stretched and injured if it’s throne in any direction. If these joints are stretched or strained beyond their normal limits, they can lose their ability to return to their normal lengths, much like a rubber band that has been stretched too far.

When an automobile is struck by another vehicle, thousands of pounds of force are exerted upon the neck and spine of the passengers.  The head, which is heavy compared to the neck, is thrust toward the hitting the vehicle.  The muscles then stretch and react with a violent spasm.  The painful result is injury to the muscles, ligaments, nerves, and on occasion – even a fractured vertebrae.

An accident victim is not necessarily all right if he or she does not have any broken bones. Painless chiropractic treatment is necessary to realign bones of the spine and restore integrity to the ligaments, muscles and joints.

When a bone is broken, it heals with bone and becomes stronger than before. Soft tissue, however, heals with scar tissue, which is weaker and less resistant. Just like a bruised banana, it never returns to its original condition and is easier to sprain in the future.  The doctor of chiropractic is trained to determine if a problem in the spine may be the cause of pain in the back or elsewhere.

Chiropractic doctors will usually provide rapid relief from the symptoms of accident distress and treat the cause of the problem by employing comfortable corrective adjustments. For example, a pain in the shoulder, arm or hand may have its origin in the neck. Likewise, pain in the hip, leg or foot may be the result of a pinched nerve in the lower back.

Regardless of whether you have any symptoms after an accident, you should still have a chiropractic check-up to determine the potential for unforeseen problems.

More than half the neck injuries from automobile accidents and falls cause victims to suffer recurring headaches and other unnecessary pain. Falls, sprains, or occupational accidents very often go unnoticed, only to return in the form of chronic pain.

Remember, even though pain is one of nature’s ways of telling you there is something wrong, it is possible to have a problem that has not reached the “pain” stage. Often the early symptoms of these injuries subside, only to return weeks, months, and even years later. Have your spine checked by experts – a doctor of chiropractic.

The doctor of chiropractic is dedicated to finding and correcting the underlying cause of your problem. We will take an extensive history and physical examination. This will help determine whether your condition falls within the scope of chiropractic services. Often, there is no charge for a preliminary consultation.

Chiropractic – Legal Issues

 Insurance Companies: realize the many advantages of chiropractic care for personal injury cases and routinely cover these costs for the injured. Our office will gladly assist you in dealing with your insurance paperwork.

The Courts: Chiropractic doctors who are trained and experienced in personal injury cases appear as expert witnesses in courts all over the country. Their testimony has helped thousands of accident victims to recover fair compensation for their injuries.

Many noted attorneys recognize that chiropractors have a good record for treating neck, spine, and back injuries.

Finally, it should be noted that most cases are settled out of the courtroom. But, if the insurance company for the responsible party refuses to settle, we will be glad to tell the court how your injury has affected you.

HEALTH CHECKLIST (following the accident)

Just take a few minutes to check for any symptoms you may have in the days and weeks following the accident. If you have any symptoms, call immediately for an appointment at 413-532-1040.

Headaches                                           Ache all over

Numbness in limbs                            Fatigue

Pain or Stiffness in Neck                       Bursitis

Nausea                                                  Neuritis

Dizziness                                              Tendonitis

Loss of Neck Motion                              Painful Back

Muscle Spasm                                      Swelling

Nervousness                                         Tingling in Limbs

Loss of Balance                                    Insomnia

Pinched Nerves                                    Cold Hands or Feet

Painful Joints                                         Tension

Ringing in Ears                                      Mental Dullness

Anxiety                                                   Early Arthritis