Car Accident Chiropractor Lafayette, CO
Looking for a car accident chiropractor in Lafayette, CO? South Pointe Chiropractic is a fully integrated medical clinic, we excel in treating complications from car accidents such as whiplash, disc bulges, disc herniation, and more. We accept most major insurance and Med Pay!
There are around 6 million car accidents per year in the United States, which comes down to 16,438 per day. Being in a car accident is a terrifying experience that can cause serious physical injuries. While nobody wants to be in a car crash, but receiving the correct medical treatment is essential for your timely and sustained recovery.
The most common car accident injuries are whiplash, disc bulging, and disc herniation. The majority of patients that we see with auto injuries have whiplash.
Even if you were involved in a low speed vehicle crash, whiplash can still occur. Roughly 60% of auto accidents occur at speeds of less than 12 mph. This may not seem like much, but even at speeds of 6 mph or less soft tissue injuries can occur, causing damage and pain in the neck, head, and shoulders.
Often times low speed impacts from behind may not leave visible damage on the bumper of the car, but it can still cause a whiplash injury to your cervical spine.
How soon after a car accident should I see a chiropractor?
Taking the right steps after a motor vehicle collision is crucial for recovery. Before seeking chiropractic treatment after an automobile accident, it is important to get x-rays to determine if any bones are broken, and the joint space is healthy enough for chiropractic care.
If there is any major trauma such as broken bones or an injury to the joint, these severe injuries must be taken care of before seeking chiropractic treatment. Once you are healthy enough for chiropractic care, South Pointe Chiropractic recommends that you should make an appointment as soon as possible.
Whenever there is an injury to a joint in the body, the surrounding muscles and fascia will “guard”, also known as tightening up. This tightening up can create long term issues if regaining mobility does not start shortly after the injury occurs. To reduce pain symptoms in as little time as possible, and safeguard against them returning in the future, seeking treatment to restore mobility and strengthen the surrounding muscles is essential. The length of chiropractic treatment depends on the individual, overall our main goal is to reduce pain symptoms as quick as possible.
For example, shoulder injuries are common among car accident victims. Often times the arm of the effected shoulder is put into a brace restricting movement for days to weeks. While the intention of pain reduction due to decreased movement seems logical, this is not treating the root cause of the problem, only masking the symptoms. When a shoulder injury is left unmoving for an extended period of time, frozen shoulder (adhesive capsulitis) can occur, which requires a more extensive and costly treatment plan.
Car accident chiropractor Lafayette treatment process
During your first appointment when seeking out chiropractic treatment for a car accident injury, it is crucial that your chiropractor goes over the details of the accident. Some of the details that will be covered in your initial examination to discover the extent of your physical injury include:
- How fast were the cars involved going?
- Was your car moving or stationary?
- What area of the vehicle was hit?
- Did your head hit the window?
- Did the airbag go off?
- Have you had injuries like this in the past?
- Was the impact unexpected or did you see the other vehicle before the collision? (subconscious tensing up before impact worsens injuries)
All of these factors will help your chiropractor to deduce how to provide the best treatment to reach your recovery goals.
The first part of the exam when whiplash is suspected, involves the chiropractor checking mobility of the neck to see how reduced the range of motion is, and if movement causes pain. Pain resulting from whiplash can either stay in the neck, or radiate down to the shoulder and arm.
Following the initial examination, soft tissue work is often the first course of care to reduce pain symptoms. Once pain free motion is achieved, the focus will shift towards strengthening the muscles surrounding the injury, which ensures that your pain relief will be lasting.
What is whiplash?
Whiplash is an injury sustained to the neck that is due to forceful, rapid back and forth movement of the cervical spine, similar to “cracking a whip”. Whiplash can occur when the neck travels forward to backward or side to side. This injury is commonly a result of rear-end car accidents, but it can also be caused from sports injuries, falls, or other types of physical trauma.
Left untreated, whiplash can cause chronic neck pain and other lasting health complications. With proper treatment such as a focus on mobility, pain free range of motion, and strengthening of the surrounding neck muscles, pain symptoms will be resolved.
Common whiplash symptoms include:
- Loss of range of motion in the neck
- Headaches, sometimes stemming from the base of the skull
- Body fatigue
- Neck pain and stiffness
- Tingling or numbness in the arms
- Tenderness or pain in the shoulder, upper back or arms
- Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
- Sleep issues
- Blurry Vision
- Difficulty concentrating on daily tasks
- Mild depression
- Memory problems and irritability
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms after a car accident, even if it was a low speed collision, please do not hesitate to schedule an appointment.
Chiropractic care for auto accident injuries
When we see patients that are involved in a car accident or other type of motor vehicle accident, the most common injury diagnosis is whiplash. Medically, whiplash is a sprain or strain of the soft tissue surrounding the spine or joints. A majority of whiplash causes neck pain, due to the jarring motion, either forward to backward, or side to side.
Concussions are common in whiplash injuries where the head moves forward, then back, slamming into the headrest. Another common result of a car accident is disc bulging and disc herniation. The specific diagnosis of the type of whiplash and any further complications depends on the severity and specifics of the accident.
Whiplash injuries are treated by chiropractors much like sprains and strains to other areas of the body, with a focus on mobility, pain free range of motion, and strengthening the muscle in the surrounding areas. When we see patients with disc bulge injuries, we are more focused on extension training and end range loading, lots of mobility.
Besides soft tissue work and spinal manipulations, our chiropractors may utilize instrument assisted soft tissue mobilization and dry needling, myofascial release techniques, trigger point therapy and trigger point injections.
In addition to our wide range of chiropractic and physical rehabilitation specialties, we also provide massage therapy, which is very beneficial for car accident related injuries such as whiplash. Massage therapy helps increase blood flow to the effected area and reduce inflammation.
When our patients come for an appointment at South Pointe Chiropractic, they receive treatment for 40 minutes. We are not a high volume / fast appointment clinic, we take the time that is needed to best treat our patients.
The appointment will consists of 20 minutes with either Dr. Dean Wright DC, or Dr. Megan Moon DC, RN, CCWP, where they will receive manipulations, mobilizations, dry needling, IASTM, trigger point therapy, myofascial release, or trigger point injections depending on the patients needs. The other 20 minutes will be with Sierra Weyerman LMT, MMP or Stephanie Anderson LMT for soft tissue massage work.
Does Med Pay cover chiropractors for auto accidents?
Med Pay is part of your auto insurance policy that covers medical expenses suffered during a car accident, regardless of who was at fault. Med Pay also covers other passengers in your car, even if the car that you were driving when in the accident is not yours. Unlike a typical insurance company, Med Pay does not have co-pay or deductible requirements.
How much does Med Pay cover in Colorado
Car insurance companies in Colorado are required by law to offer this coverage. Med Pay in Colorado offers a minimum of $5,000 in coverage for medical care, and if you pay a higher premium for additional coverage you may be covered for up to $100,000. These benefits are at not cost to the patient.
*Med Pay benefits come standard with your auto insurance policy, unless you chose to voluntarily waive the benefits. If the auto insurance policy holder chose to waive the benefits, Med Pay coverage is voided.
What does Med Pay cover in Colorado?
Med Pay covers medical expenses for injuries that occurred when in a car, some of these expenses include:
- Chiropractic care
- Ambulance rides
- Emergency department treatment
- Diagnostic services
- Pain medications if required
- Hospital bills
Car Accident Chiropractor FAQ's
Musculoskeletal pain after a car accident is a strong indicator of an injury. Even if you are not immediately feeling pain symptoms, there may still be underlying damage to the soft tissue and joints does not produce any physical pain symptoms until weeks or months after the incident. Often times traditional medical doctors prescribe pain medications which only mask the symptoms, and do not address the root cause of pain.
Chiropractors focus on restoring mobility, range of motion, and strengthening the surrounding areas which ensures lasting pain relief.
Taking the right steps after an automobile accident is crucial. Depending on the severity and circumstances of the accident additional lab tests or diagnostic imaging such as x-rays may be recommended before receiving any chiropractic treatment. Once the patient is ready to receive chiropractic care, the injury will be assessed using evidenced based practices during the initial examination.
The most common injury resulting from a car accident is whiplash. At its core, whiplash causes a strain to the soft tissues ini the neck, head, and shoulders. Chiropractic care methods combined with medical massage is the best option to reduce pain symptoms from soft tissue based injuries. Strengthening the surround areas is also a key aspect of recovery, which will prevent further future issues from developing.