#1 Rated Auto Accident Injury Clinic in Jacksonville
East Coast Injury Clinic – Auto Accident Injury Care & Chiropractic
located in Jacksonville, FL
When you’ve suffered an injury, pain medications and physical therapy don’t always provide the relief you need. Plus, if you develop chronic pain from your injury, it can have a significant impact on your day-to-day life by making it more difficult to take care of routine tasks. At East Coast Injury Clinic, a team of chiropractic professionals offers spinal adjustments and other chiropractic care for patients in Jacksonville, Florida, who have chronic pain.
Car Wrecks Cause Physical Damage
Auto accidents come with physical consequences. Whether the vehicle is totaled or not, car wrecks cause trauma to our physical and mental health that will be long-lasting if not taken care of quickly!
Our physical healing is too often neglected because, in many cases, we may not even ‘feel’ the impact immediately beyond bruises, cuts, or some soreness. The same can be said for our mental health, as we think we can just ‘shake off’ the trauma in a week or two. But the real issues caused by any sized wreck will only worsen unless we do something about how deeply we’ve been affected beneath the surface.
After addressing the first racing thoughts after an accident—i.e.is the car working, am I working?—our next thoughts usually focus solely on the vehicle’s healing or replacement. But make the decision before your accident that an equally important thing to focus on is your own healing journey. It can be daunting just to consider even one more thing to handle on top of those most obvious after a wreck (like calling a tow truck and making sure all involved are basically functioning), like making sure you don’t end up with years of physical or emotional side effects. For that reason and so many more, the best and easiest way to take care of your physical and mental/brain health after any sized accident is by visiting your local chiropractic center.
What is a Concussion?
Motor vehicle collisions often injure soft tissue structures such as muscles and ligaments, but they can also impact the delicate tissues of the brain. One type of often acquired injury is a concussion. Concussions are mild traumatic brain injuries caused by a sudden, forceful bump, jolt, or blow to the head causing the delicate structures of the brain to twist or collide with the rigid insides of your skull.1
Concussions can occur with even low-speed, low-impact vehicle collisions.2 Signs and symptoms of a concussion often appear within minutes to hours of the initial blow to the head, but can also change or worsen days later when the brain is stressed by activities such as reading or sports.3 Concussions are more common in children and adolescents due to their smaller body sizes.3,4
7 Common Concussion Symptoms and Warning Signs
How do you know if you have had a concussion after a car accident? Pay close attention to yourself (and/or other victims in your car accident) for several days after a wreck—whether great or small. It doesn’t take much to cause a concussion. Children and adolescents are especially vulnerable to concussions from an accident or a trauma where the head is whipped around. This includes any blow to the head or body, and especially if there is loss of consciousness even for a moment or two.
You’ll notice that some of these (particularly the last few) are better observed by another set of eyes and ears. So, if you personally know someone who has been injured, one of the best ways to care for their recovery is to pay close attention, looking out for any of the following warning signs as outlined by the Mayo Clinic5:
- Headaches—of various pain levels, and can be chronic or come and go
- Ringing of the ears—help children identify this even if they don’t articulate it as they may be confused about what is happening; you can begin to detect this if the child seems distracted or overwhelmed with regular amounts of noise, or starts talking louder than normal
- Nausea or vomiting—and/or other sudden gastrointestinal issues
- Drowsiness or fatigue—typically this begins at the point of injury/event but may worsen over the days following
- Blurry vision or seeing stars—as well as hypersensitivity to light
Major Damage from Car Accidents: Concussions and Other Traumas
SERIOUS SIGNS OF BRAIN INJURY
Because concussions are considered a form of brain injury, some symptoms indicate a degree of injury that may require immediate medical treatment.6 These signs include:
|1. Loss of consciousness greater than 60 seconds||2. Not knowing people or places|
|3. Failure to eat or nurse, especially in children||4. Unusual behavior|
|5. Weakness or numbness||6. Worsening headache which could indicate bleeding in the skull|
The symptoms listed should not be ignored. If you, your child/adolescent, or a friend who’s recently survived a traumatic incident is showing any of the above, please reach out to a doctor. A medical emergency doctor is a good choice, but a chiropractor is also able to diagnose concussions and other similar physical damages from auto wrecks. Your local chiropractor is also able in most cases to order the proper MRI or similar tests that will verify the initial assessments, and help you build the right treatment plan.
Besides this, chiropractic care is optimal after an auto accident because inevitably, whether you have suffered a concussion or not, bones and joints have been jolted and this can cause a host of other physical or mental issues.7 Neurological damage or pinched nerves are frequently brought on by car wrecks or similar body- or head-jolting events (think anything from auto emergencies to the kid’s Saturday sports game). Again, in many cases we try to “just shake it off” but the reality of what has occurred may become a deeper and years-long health struggle if not tended to promptly.
Remember: making the appointment to see your chiropractic physician directly after any physically challenging event is not a sign of weakness—it’s a sign of true wisdom that might save you years of pain down the road. In fact, not making that appointment may cost you years of good-quality health!
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TREATMENT OPTIONS AFTER AN ACCIDENT OR OTHER TRAUMA:
- SLEEP: Get plenty of sleep at night, and take rest breaks during the day to relax.
- REST: Minimize physical activity. This may include avoiding heavy lifting, cutting back on sports, or changes at work and home to reduce muscle strain and fatigue. Underestimating the impact on your body/’overdoing it’ can actually cause worsening of symptoms, and lengthen your recovery time.
- ACCOMMODATIONS may be required while taking tests or performing tasks. Your doctor may recommend shortened work or school days, or reduced school hours or workloads.6 Ask your chiropractor or physician about this so you are prepared with required documentation at school or work if needed.
- CONSERVATIVE CARE including spinal manipulation, rehabilitation, physical therapy, stretches and exercise, soft tissue work, cognitive rehab, and a monitored return to your daily routine. So much of your recovery after a major trauma can be accomplished at your ‘one-stop-shop’: the chiropractic office.
Conservative options help restore mobility, lessen pain, and relax tight muscles, allowing your body to focus on healing the delicate brain structures affected by a concussion. Less invasive methods of healing are very effective for long-term health.8 This includes regular spinal and neck adjustments, physical therapy, or anything else your chiropractor suggests.
HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE TO HEAL?
Ask your doctor about what activities to avoid as you recover. And be patient with yourself – recovering from concussions may happen in a few days, or it may take longer. Talk with your doctor about your concerns. Your East Coast Injury Clinic chiropractic team will create an individualized treatment plan tailored to your specific needs as you heal.
During the moment of emergency, you will have an inevitable load of thoughts and decisions running through your mind. Just as it is important to have an emergency plan for a fire in the house, it is invaluable to make sure that you and your family members have a solid plan in place for all traumatic events—when reasonable thinking is needed most yet hardest to access. Auto accidents, other physically-demanding events, and traumas to the head, neck, or body cause long-lasting consequences if not attended to promptly (even if you don’t notice major problems immediately).
Be smart and know who you might need to contact, where you will seek care, and signs to watch out for in those mind-flooding moments. Having a plan will also allow you to make positive choices especially in the case that you have personally suffered brain-altering damage. Know your local best choices for chiropractic and other medical care, and talk to your loved ones about their plans, too.
- Cleveland Clinic. Concussions. 2015.
- Castro, W.H., et al. Do “whiplash injuries” occur in low-speed rear impacts? Eur Spine J. 1997;6(6):366-75.
- WebMD. Neck Strain & Whiplash. 2020.
- Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Brain injury basics. 2019.
- Mayo Clinic. Concussion. 2020.
- Mayo Clinic. Whiplash. 2020.
- Johnson CD, Green BN, Nelson RC, Moreau B, Nabhan D. Chiropractic and concussion in sport: a narrative review of the literature. J Chiropr Med. 2013;12(4):216-229. doi:10.1016/j.jcm.2013.10.011
- James Lehman DC. Mild Traumatic Brain Injury and Concussion: An Invisible and Confusing Condition. American Chiropractic Association. https://www.acatoday.org/News-Publications/ACA-News-Archive/ArtMID/5721/ArticleID/85/Mild-Traumatic-Brain-Injury-and-Concussion-An-Invisible-and-Confusing-Condition. Published April 22, 2016. Accessed June 19, 2020.
Quality Care Options At East Coast Injury
East Coast Injury Clinic, Jacksonville, FL
Phone (appointments): (904) 513-3954 | Fax: (904) 212-0223
Office Hours: Monday - Friday 9:00 am - 6:00 pm, Saturday - By Appt Only, Sunday - Closed
Address: 10550 Deerwood Park Blvd., Suite 609, Jacksonville, FL 32256