It’s easy to judge our health based on the presence or absence of pain or symptoms. This can be misleading when it comes to the spine, but it also applies to many parts of your body. Think of going to the dentist to get a check-up only to find out there is a cavity (aka rotten bone in your mouth), meanwhile you were oblivious to it because there was no pain. How many of you have had blood tested and been told by the M.D. that you now have Type 2 Diabetes? It was found by a blood test and there were probably no symptoms to give you a warning. There are so many other examples from arthritis and back problems to cancer and digestive issues where feeling a symptom was not part of the underlying condition.
3 Keys to Avoid Chronic Neck or Back Pain After a Car Accident – Tips From Whiplash Expert Dr. Ryan Browning, D.C.
Having seen hundreds of patients after car crashes there are many mistakes that people make which cause longer lasting and sometimes permanent damage to the spine from a car accident or whiplash trauma. Many patients come in shortly after a motor vehicle accident and some come in a long time after once they are aware that their chronic neck or back pain is not going away. One of my jobs as their chiropractor is to educate them on how they can get better now and stay better in the future. Here are 3 tips of things to do after any car wreck.
#1- Seek immediate treatment or an opinion. If you are in an accident and there is immediate pain, it needs to be tended to immediately. This initial pain very well may worsen in the next day or two, so the sooner it is diagnosed and treated the better. High levels of pain should be checked in the emergency room to rule out bone fractures or other trauma to the body’s vital organs or the intervertebral discs. Whether or not trauma care in the E.R. is necessary, the next step should be a specialist in whiplash. This would be specific chiropractors. All chiropractors can see a car accident patient, but you want one who is expert in this area. You want one that has post-doctorate training and certification in whiplash and auto accident trauma to be the one to examine your injuries. The higher the level of training in this area, the higher the specificity in finding and helping to resolve your problems.
#2- Start with ICE to reduce inflammation, not heat! One of the most basic rules of treatment is that ice helps decrease inflammation because it pushes the blood away from the muscles, tendons, ligaments, all the soft tissues that are trying to heal after an injury. Heat will bring blood towards the area thus making it more difficult to repair the area. When in doubt, ice! I am continually amazed how often a patient comes in after an accident and they have been told by someone to put heat on it- even from the E.R. and urgent care centers!! Try to get extra amounts of water for hydration to the muscles and extra rest as your body is working in overdrive to repair itself and will feel fatigued and run down for a while.
#3- At a minimum, get spinal x-rays to check the alignment and curvatures of the spine as well as under the radar fractures that may occur. This is necessary before undergoing any form of treatment! Just a few months ago I examined a woman after her car accident. She inquired if her son should be checked as well since he had a little bit of pain. After I agreed, she brought him in and I started with an examination and x-rays. I found a large fracture at his fifth lumbar vertebrae! If he had begun many forms of treatment without knowing about this he would have been injured worse from treatment. This case was a surprise since his levels of pain were much lower than expected with this finding. As a rule, after a car accident, at least get spinal x-rays and a complete examination performed by a car accident chiropractor that is expert in this area.
Our essential oils for natural health class will be held tomorrow by our wellness consultant, Brooke. You will have the opportunity to learn more about how to use them for you and your family and ask any questions about the health benefits and proper uses for them are. You will also get to experience them firsthand to smell and feel their effects!
The class is free and available to any who are interested tomorrow, February 17th @ 6:30pm. It will be held at our office Browning Family Chiropractic & Wellness, 187 Kirkham Circle, Kyle TX 78640.
We are a chiropractic office located in the Plum Creek neighborhood in Kyle, TX. We help people get out of pain and also enjoy teaching them to get healthy too. The addition of essential oils and natural nutritional supplements has been a perfect complement to the wellness portion of our chiropractic practice!
Dr. Ryan Browning
Have you ever wondered if chiropractic can help you?
Many have had this question when they arrive for their new patient appointment. Sometimes they have already tried pain medication, Tylenol, muscle relaxers, stretching, massage, pain management injections, and the list goes on to different treatments out there. These may help to cover up symptoms and alleviate pain, but too often the cause is left undiagnosed and untreated.
Check this out….one week ago we had a teenage boy come into our chiropractic office with years of arm weakness, shoulder pain, numbness and tingling in the wrists, inability to use hands very much. In fact, it caused pain to write with a pencil during school and he was unable to carry his instrument during marching band performances. He had undergone all sorts of medication, seen the family doctor, neurologist, rheumatologist, and received multiple x-rays and MRIs. After a chiropractic examination and x-rays, some misalignment in the spine was apparent in the neck and upper back. These are the areas where the nerves going down the arms and to the hands are located. After 2 adjustments this young man already feels much better! He was able to hold his own instrument during band competition and all without pain pills or medication.
Many believe chiropractic care is just for back pain, neck pain, headaches, sciatica, muscle soreness and whiplash. Although these are very common conditions we see, chiropractic is really about treating the whole person and bringing balance to the spine and entire body. When this happens, the spinal cord and nerves can function optimally which often has side effects of better sleep, more energy, better digestion, reduced allergies and a stronger immune system. These are many of the things we get to see happen daily. In this young man’s case, it is a true pleasure to watch someone return to health!
Dr. Ryan Browning