How do you know what doctor to see after a car accident? No matter what injuries you are dealing with, you want the best of the best to help you fully heal and recover. Since millions of people get injured in car accidents each year, it’s important to find a doctor who has experience in treating these types of injuries. If you get into a wreck and suffer an obvious car accident injury, you might go to the emergency room or an urgent care center for medical attention or assistance. However, doctors at the ER or urgent care are there to take care of your immediate needs and make sure you are stable before you go. Continued treatment and care for your car accident injuries will happen with another doctor. You want to work with a car accident doctor who has extensive knowledge and experience so you can get started on recovery and rehabilitation. When it comes to finding the right doctor for you after you’ve been injured in a wreck, here’s what you can expect from your car accident doctor.
What to Expect after a Car Accident
Every person’s body will react to a car accident injury in a different way, whether due to their age, height, or another aspect of their medical history. That’s why it’s important to find a car accident doctor who can address your specific symptoms and provide a treatment plan that works for you. Here are seven things to expect from your car accident doctor.
Knowledge of Neurological & Musculoskeletal Injuries
Car accident doctors must have a strong working knowledge of neurological and musculoskeletal injuries, as these are the most common types of injuries that occur in car accidents. From whiplash to a herniated disc to a broken ankle, you need a car accident doctor who can identify the signs and symptoms of an injury and get you the prompt medical attention you need. Car accident doctors can come from various specialties, including orthopedic doctors, neurologists, chiropractors, and physical therapists. Depending on their area of focus, each car accident doctor will bring something unique to their approach to diagnosing and treating all types of car accident injuries.
Experience with Car Accident Injuries
Nobody wants to be the doctor’s first patient with that particular type of injury or condition. That is especially true when it comes to car accident injuries, as they can also be tricky to diagnose. Car accident injuries have often been called hidden injuries because of how symptoms can be delayed. Whether due to the shock of the situation or slowly increasing inflammation, it can take hours or even days for you to fully experience all the symptoms of your injury. Car accident doctors need to know the signs of common car accident injuries and how they can impact all different body types.
Thorough Diagnostic Process
When you visit a car accident doctor, they will perform a thorough diagnostic examination. This will typically include a physical exam and assessment of the injured area. They may ask you to perform certain motions or movements to check for mobility restrictions or other issues caused by the injury. A clinical examination will also involve a review of your medical history, so your doctor can take into account things that might impact your body’s response to an injury or impact the healing process. Your car accident doctor will want to know about any symptoms you recognized immediately after the accident and what symptoms may have crept up later. Detailed descriptions of your pain levels and other symptoms can help your doctor determine the type and severity of your injuries. They will also perform diagnostic imaging tests like X-rays, CT scans, or an MRI of the injured area. These diagnostic tools provide your car accident doctor with a detailed look at any damage to bones, joints, muscles, ligaments, spinal discs, and other parts of the body. Diagnostic imaging tests can also help rule out other injuries that may share common symptoms.
Head Trauma Assessment
In the event of a serious trauma like a car accident, your car accident doctor may perform a head trauma assessment. Even what seemed like a slight bump on the head could turn into something more serious. The shock and adrenaline of getting into a car accident can actually mask your pain and other symptoms, so you might not realize you have suffered a head injury until other, more obvious symptoms start to set in. Unfortunately, head traumas are common with car accidents, so it is important to rule out a concussion or other serious injury as this can be a matter of life and death. A head trauma assessment may involve checking for symptoms like headaches, dizziness, and blurry vision, along with cognitive effects like disorientation and confusion.
Individualized Treatment Plan
Your car accident doctor should provide you with an individualized treatment plan specific to your symptoms and injuries. An individualized treatment plan is much more effective than a one-size-fits-all approach because each body will respond differently to a car accident injury and to treatment. There are so many treatment styles and options for car accident injuries, so you want a car accident doctor who will take into consideration what will work best for you. An individualized treatment plan may include an increase in chiropractic care and physical therapy as an alternative to prescription pain medications. Or your car accident doctor may incorporate specific stretches and exercises to reintroduce certain movements to help you get back to a particular sport or activity you enjoy.
Physical Therapy for Rehabilitation
The rehabilitation process is a key aspect of getting the treatment you need after a car accident. A car accident injury can leave you with weakened muscles, reduced range of motion, and restricted mobility based on your specific injuries. Physical therapy after a car accident will help you regain your strength and improve your mobility in a safe and controlled environment. Your physical therapist will focus on stretches, exercises, and other techniques that allow you to take an active role in your recovery. This also helps boost your mood as you gain confidence in your movements again.
Chiropractic Care for Recovery
Chiropractic care also offers a wide range of benefits for recovering from a car accident injury. Whether your car accident doctor is a chiropractor or recommends chiropractic as part of your treatment plan, this treatment style can help you recover faster. Chiropractic care takes an all-natural approach to treatment and focuses on improving the body’s natural healing abilities. Chiropractic adjustments help restore misalignments in your spine and joints that can disrupt the healthy functioning of your nervous system. Chiropractors also use a hands-on approach to help reduce your pain and improve your mobility that may have been impacted by a car accident injury. Chiropractic care can help prevent chronic pain and discomfort from bothering you long after the injury. Back and neck pain are common experiences after a car accident, and chiropractors can give your spine and joints the care you deserve to help you return to your regular routines and improve your quality of life.
The Importance of Prompt Medical Attention
If you were in a minor fender-bender or accident, you might be tempted to shrug off mild discomfort and wait for it to go away on its own. This can actually be a mistake because pain and other symptoms are signals that something isn’t quite right inside your body. Here are three reasons why getting prompt medical attention is the right choice after a car accident.
Increase Chances of Full Recovery
The sooner you see a doctor after a car accident, the sooner you can get started on a treatment plan to help you recover. Prompt medical attention after a car accident actually increases your chances for a full recovery because many issues can be caught early before they develop into something more serious.
Reduce Risk of Chronic Pain
Delayed treatment or no treatment at all can result in chronic pain that impacts every aspect of your life. Reduce your risk for chronic pain by getting the care you need for any potential injuries. You want to make sure your bones and muscles heal properly to help avoid chronic pain or other issues down the road.
Prevent Future Injuries
Prompt medical attention can also help you prevent future injuries. If you keep going about your regular routine without getting treatment for a car accident injury, you risk making the injury worse. An untreated injury can also cause the area to weaken, making you more likely to get injured in that area again.
Car Accident Doctors at Bend Spinal Care
At Bend Spinal Care, our car accident doctors aim to provide you with quality, comprehensive treatment and care. Our team of Massage Therapists, Chiropractic Physicians, and Chiropractic Assistants work together to exceed your expectations. Call today 541-318-8627 to schedule an appointment with one of our car accident specialists.