How Long Should I Go to a Chiropractor After an Accident?
Car accidents can be scary — and dealing with the repercussions can be confusing.
You might already know that you should visit a chiropractor after a car accident but when do you need to book an appointment and how long will you need to go?
Read on to learn the answers to those questions as well as:
- What treatment looks like
- Why you should book an appointment with your chiropractor as soon as possible, and
- Much more.
Table of Contents
Should You Go to a Chiropractor After an Accident?
Routine visits to the chiropractor are important, but going to the chiropractor after car accidents is an absolute must-do. Even if your accident wasn’t “that bad,” you should still schedule a visit since there is often damage that you cannot see or feel — at least not right away.
The first 72 hours after an accident are often referred to as the “golden window” for chiropractic care because these are the critical hours where the body is beginning to heal. Scar tissue begins to form as the body attempts to fix the injuries as quickly as possible.
The human body has an incredible ability to heal itself. However, after a traumatic event like a car accident, it often needs some assistance in the healing process.
That is where chiropractic care comes in. Chiropractors are doctors who have extensive training in caring for the musculoskeletal system. The spine is the central part of this system and just about everything the human body does is related to the spine.
Car accidents often negatively impact the spine, leading to many issues, such as whiplash and herniated discs.
Why Should You See a Chiropractor After a Car Accident?
Car accidents are incredibly traumatic events and your body feels the impact, even if you walk away without a scratch. When your body is thrown and jostled, as happens in accidents, it is not uncommon for your joints and muscles to take on tension.
Your spine can easily be thrown out of alignment in an accident, potentially causing a whole host of issues such as:
- Impaired mobility
- Knee pain
- Neck pain
- Back pain
- Suppressed immune system
- Numbness and tingling in hands and feet
- Chronic headaches
- Respiratory issues
- Broken bones
- Long-term joint, spine, or neck issues
One of the many benefits of visiting Therapia Wellness Clinic’s chiropractors after accidents is their ability to diagnose and treat hidden injuries. You can be severely injured and not see it or even know it, at first.
After a car accident, your chiropractor will perform a general wellness check on your spine and any areas where you might be feeling pain or tenderness resulting from the accident. They will likely also order X-rays. This examination allows them to identify any injuries that might not be obvious to an untrained eye.
Once the chiropractor has made a diagnosis, they will work with you to create a treatment plan to get you back up and running as quickly as possible.
HAtTherapia Wellness Clinic, we are committed to caring for our patients and making sure they receive the highest possible quality treatment.
Another benefit of seeking chiropractic care after an auto accident is that chiropractic care enables the body to heal naturally, without the use of addictive pain medications.
After auto injuries, prescription painkillers may be prescribed by a traditional physician.
Instead of actually treating the injury, the medications merely numb the symptoms, leading to unresolved injuries and potentially addictive behaviors as the pain persists.
How Long Should I See a Chiropractor After a Car Accident?
How long to see a chiropractor after a car accident really depends on the severity of your injuries. On average it takes about four months of consistent care to heal from most moderate to severe injuries. If your injuries are mild it might take less time. Severe injuries can take over a year to heal.
There are multiple factors involved in the time it takes to recover under a chiropractor’s care. Two of the most important being:
- When you choose to seek treatment — . The longer you wait, the more your body has learned to accommodate the injury. Instead of restoring normal function, your body was forced to cope and is now more resistant to treatment and healing.
- Consistency — If you follow your chiropractor’s care plan closely, you will heal much faster than if you just pop in every couple of weeks.
At Therapia Wellness Clinic we know how to treat car accident-related injuries efficiently and effectively. Our goal is always to treat your injuries and relieve your pain as quickly as possible.
Do I Need to Go More Than Once?
How many chiropractic visits after a car accident do you need?
Probably more than just one.
If you typically opt for more traditional medical care, it might feel strange to you to have to make multiple trips to your chiropractor’s office. But chiropractors are a different type of physician and spinal injuries are a different creature altogether.
The human body is not a stationary object, it is constantly in motion, bending, twisting, and moving.
Chiropractors know this and they know how to work with your body’s movements to promote healing. As you heal, your body adjusts and shifts and it is important for your chiropractor to be able to work alongside it and make sure it is healing properly.
After your initial visit, your chiropractor will create a care plan that gives you a better idea of how many visits you will need.
Most patients start out visiting two to three times per week for the first few weeks. After that, they start tapering down to weekly, bi-weekly, and monthly visits.
Eventually, most patients reach the point where they really only need to come in on an as-needed basis.
While you certainly need more than one visit to heal properly, the power of a single chiropractic visit is not to be underestimated.
Just one visit can greatly help your healing process by aligning your spine and making it possible for your body to begin healing.
3 Factors That Determine How Long You Should Go to a Chiropractor After a Car Accident
#1: The Severity and Location of Your Injury
Minor injuries take less time to heal while severe injuries take longer.
The location of your injury also plays a massive role in your recovery time. A dislocated shoulder versus an injured spine will have different healing times.
#2: When You Begin Treatment
Seeking treatment as soon as possible is the key to recovering quickly.
Waiting a week or two after your accident to seek care can greatly extend your recovery time and cause more pain.
Typically, if a patient waits several weeks to come in after a car accident, their recovery time often triples.
Aside from speeding up recovery times, seeking care right away may also help you experience less pain.
#3: How Well You Follow Your Treatment Plan
It is imperative that you stick with the plan that your chiropractor lays out for you. Chiropractors are medical professionals who know how to create effective care plans. However, if you don’t follow it, the plan won’t help as much as it could.
Derailing from your care plan for even a couple of weeks can have devastating consequences that set you back in your healing.
The more you stick to the plan, the faster you will heal.
What Will Treatment Look Like?
Therapia Wellness Clinic, is more than just a chiropractor’s office. We are SW Portland’s premier multi-disciplinary clinic. While chiropractic care is at the core of all we do, we also offer other modalities that provide our patients with access to holistic wellness options such as:
- Chiropractic care
- Chinese herbs
Each of our client’s treatment plans are carefully curated to take advantage of the best treatments available.
During the first weeks of post-accident treatment, we focus on pain relief and basic restoration of function. The goal here is to alleviate as much pain as possible and get you back to your life-rhythms as soon as possible.
Once these are progressing nicely, we introduce rehab focused on strengthening ligament and tissue stability. It is important to offer your body support, even after you are feeling better. Healing from auto-related injuries is a process that continues long after the pain is gone.
First and foremost, we treat with chiropractic care. By aligning your musculoskeletal system, chiropractic care allows the rest of your body to heal and respond favorably to different treatment methods.
A typical chiropractic appointment will include a manual adjustment from the chiropractor. This is where the chiropractor aligns your spine and adjusts your hips and neck.
Some visits also include therapies such as heat and stimulation, traction, roller tables, or kinesiology taping.
Revered for centuries by holistic health practitioners, acupuncture is an incredible modality that can help alleviate pain and encourage healing.
Therapia’s acupuncturists are fully certified and use only high-quality, sterile, disposable needles alongside other alternative methods based on your needs.
Acupuncture is safe and effective and many patients report that they barely even feel it.
In addition to reducing pain and inflammation, acupuncture can help with:
- Menstrual disorders
- Cold & flu symptoms
And that is just a few of the ailments it can treat. Acupuncture is a powerful tool that can help speed you on your way to post-accident recovery.
Massage therapy is more than just a great self-care technique. In addition to helping you relax and find a little zen, massage therapy can actually be a powerful healing modality.
Massage therapy helps to regulate and increase blood flow and oxygen, leading to faster recovery and pain relief.
When Should I Stop Going to the Chiropractor After a Car Accident?
For some patients, chiropractic care is something they choose to incorporate into their wellness routine. This is often due to chronic injuries that need consistent treatment — but this isn’t always the case.
The good news is that, for most patients, full recovery can be achieved through consistent care as long as it is needed. Any good chiropractor makes it their goal to see their patients healed and back to their normal lives as soon as possible.
Once you have fully recovered, your chiropractor will help you decide on the best course of action and when to end treatment.
You should always listen to your chiropractor like you would any other medical professional. While you might be feeling much better, they can let you know if there is anything that needs continued care to ensure you do not end up injured again.
Therapia Wellness Clinic: The Experts in Chiropractic Care
Therapia Wellness Clinic has one priority — you.
We are proud to offer multiple modalities and custom care plans that offer you a road to recovery after a car accident. We are proud to serve SW Portland and we want to serve you.
Visiting a chiropractor after car accidents is the best way to begin — and continue — healing from car accident-related injuries.
Book your appointment today.