Chronic pain is an issue that affects nearly sixty million people around the world.
A person could be dealing with it for three months or more, and it can either be in one area of their body or it could spread. It is challenging to treat and manage, especially after a car crash. Thankfully, there are ways to relieve chronic pain after an accident.
Defining Chronic Pain
Chronic pain is long-lasting and caused by damage to the nervous system or inflammation. In addition, specific health conditions can cause chronic pain, such as arthritis, fibromyalgia, lupus, migraines, and multiple sclerosis. When someone is going through chronic pain, they could be dealing with it on a short-term or long-term basis. It could also either be sharp, dull, constant, or intermittent. In other words, it could be acute or chronic pain, and it is essential to know the difference. It is considered chronic pain if someone experiences a constant injury and regularly hurts.
Common Car Accident Injuries
When someone experiences a car accident, there are a variety of injuries could occur. They range from minor to severe to potentially life-threatening. One of the most common injuries is whiplash which is when a person’s head is jerked forward and then snapped back, similar to cracking a whip.
Another common injury after a crash is a back or spinal cord injury. If these injuries occur, there can be numerous ailments that a person can suffer from, such as disc slips, sprains, strains, and fractures. There is also a chance of suffering a traumatic brain injury that could cause significant damage and has been a leading cause of disability or death after a car accident. A head injury can be minor to severe, depending on how hard they hit their head.
Those who have been through a car wreck may also find themselves suffering from a fractured bone, most often, these occur in a person’s leg, ribs, arms, wrists, and ankles. Depending on the fracture’s severity, surgery may be necessary to repair the bone. Finally, a shoulder injury is the last common injury caused by a car accident. These can happen if people use their hands to brace themselves on the dashboard or steering wheel when the crash occurs. When they brace themselves like that, it causes their shoulders to absorb the excessive force and, thus, injuring the shoulder.
Treatments for Chronic Pain
Chronic pain usually occurs after the injuries from a car accident have already healed. It is generally brought on by nerve damage, muscle tension, and inflammation. The good news is that several treatments are available after a car wreck, which can either be short-term or long-term, depending on the extent of the injury and the level of pain.
The most common treatment when dealing with chronic pain after an accident is going to physical therapy. It is one of the best ways to manage any pain resulting from the crash. These pain specialists work with their patients to assess and recommend the best treatment plan based on what they need. For example, a physical therapist can teach a person how to walk again and can aid in reducing the pain in their joints and muscles by practicing various exercises designed to promote healing.
Another treatment that may be necessary is interventional procedures, which are recommended to those who are experiencing chronic pain that has shown no improvement with prescription medication, physical therapy, or rest. These procedures could include treatments such as discography, epidural steroids, joint injections, or spinal cord stimulators.
A couple of other treatments include pain medication or acupuncture. If a person dealing with chronic pain needs medication to treat their pain, they should always only use what their doctor prescribes and avoid over-the-counter drugs.
However, some may want to avoid medication and decide to give acupuncture a try to relieve their chronic pain.
Nobody should have to live with chronic pain after a car accident. Thankfully, options exist, so no one has to live in pain forever.