Should You Seek Chiropractic Care After An Auto Accident?

If you've been involved in an auto accident -- even without serious injury -- you are probably still dealing with aches and pains. Although there are a number of ways to treat this pain without medical intervention, including ibuprofen, hot baths, or heating pads, you may want to consider seeking chiropractic care to assist you in your recovery. A trained chiropractor can help break up any scar tissue that has formed around your bones and joints as a result of the accident and help reduce any pain or stiffness you're feeling. Read on to learn more about how chiropractic care works and how it might be able to help you.

What is a chiropractor?

A chiropractor is a trained medical professional who focuses on the treatment of muscle and spine disorders. A chiropractor is not a medical doctor and cannot prescribe medication, so you'll find that most chiropractors have an increased emphasis on self-care and treatment before seeking medication or surgery.

What will happen at my first visit?

During your first visit to a chiropractor, you'll probably have some X-rays taken -- this will show the chiropractor the existence of any muscular or skeletal disorders that may require treatment. Your chiropractor or a member of his or her staff will also go over your lifestyle, including diet, exercise, and health history. 

Next, your chiropractor will ask you to get into a comfortable position on an adjustment table. He or she will gently feel along your spine or other problem areas to determine where an "adjustment" should be performed. During an adjustment, the chiropractor will make a sudden motion against your joint, and you may hear a popping or cracking sound. This adjustment will release the joint from any restriction or constriction it may be experiencing as a result of scar tissue buildup or misalignment. Many patients have reported feeling an instant sensation of relief once the adjustment has taken place.

Will I need to see the chiropractor on a regular basis?

Although some people who seek chiropractic care have a standing weekly or monthly appointment, if you're visiting a chiropractor as the result of a one-time accident or injury -- and the chiropractor is successful in treating the pain from this injury -- it's unlikely you'll need to come back. 

However, if you take part in a sport that has the potential for overuse injuries -- such as running or bicycling -- you may wish to periodically visit the chiropractor so that any scar tissue that has built up around your joints as a result of exercise can be released. An auto accident chiropractor may be helpful.