Car accidents injuries are one of the most common causes of visits to emergency rooms in the United States. Experts estimate that around one-vehicle collision occurs every minute, and as many as 4.4 million people are injured enough to require medical attention – and that’s just those that have their injuries reported. Millions of more people involved in car accidents walk, or limp away, and suffer minor injuries that never make it onto official reports. This number is expected to rise over the coming decade as increasing traffic levels make motor accidents increasingly more likely.
Musculoskeletal injuries are some of those that are rarely reported after a car accident, and one of the reasons for this is that many people don’t realize that they have been hurt for hours or even days following the event. This can be due to a combination of factors, including the initial adrenaline running through their body masking their symptoms, to the delayed onset of effects which typically occurs when the bones, muscles, and connective tissues inside the body are affected. For example, whiplash – an injury that occurs when the connective tissues within the neck are hyperextended and damaged as a result of force whipping the head back and forth – doesn’t usually manifest with symptoms until 24-48 hours later. Hidden/delayed injuries are one of the main reasons why many medical professionals recommend that you see a chiropractor within 48 hours of a car crash, whether you think you’ve been hurt or not. There’s a range of different chiropractic techniques that may be used to treat any injuries that you have sustained, and one of these is massage therapy.
Massage is usually thought of as being a relaxing, spa-type treatment that you choose to help you unwind. However, massage can also be extremely beneficial in treating a range of types of injury and chronic health conditions. When used in this way, massage focuses on manipulating the soft tissues of the body in order to create a therapeutic effect. As the muscles and tissues are massaged, blood flow increases, flooding the area with blood containing oxygen and nutrients that can reduce inflammation and speed up the healing process. Massage also helps to reduce pressure on the central nervous system, which in turn will help your body to function optimally.
There are many benefits associated with receiving massage therapy following a car accident. These include:
It’s normal to feel in some discomfort following a car accident, and many people take over the counter painkillers to help them to cope. This can help to get the inflammation under control, which can be contributing to your pain and making it harder for you to move around. Massage therapy boosts circulation which is a natural way of reducing inflammation, reducing tension, and delivering oxygen and nutrients to the body so that it can heal, and your pain can be reduced without the need for medication.
Everyone wants to get back to normal as quickly as possible following a car accident, but this isn’t always possible, particularly if damage and inflammation are preventing you from moving around as you would normally. Massage therapy can help relax your muscles and joints so that you can regain strength and mobility and benefit from increased flexibility and range of motion. This will enable you to get back to your usual routine and see your quality of life restored much more quickly.
Scarring is a very natural part of the healing process and in the case of injuries to the musculoskeletal system, this scarring occurs internally. While you can’t see it, if the scarring becomes too thick you will be able to feel it as your movement will be restricted. Deep tissue massage has been shown to help break down scar tissue and can even prevent it from forming, helping you to enjoy greater flexibility and mobility after you heal.
Another core benefit of massage therapy following a car accident is that it can significantly speed up your recovery, particularly if musculoskeletal injuries are the only variety that you have experienced. Your massage sessions will encourage blood rich in oxygen and nutrients around the body where it can reach the damaged cells so that they can repair themselves more rapidly.
If you have been involved in a car accident and would like to find out more about how massage therapy could help with your recovery, don’t hesitate to contact our knowledgeable and friendly team.