When combining heavy metal and machinery with speed, it can severely damage your body. Though your car is designed to protect you, it can’t shield you entirely from all injuries, especially vulnerable areas like the neck and should.
What Causes Neck and Shoulder Injuries in Car Accidents?
Your car is taking the brunt of the impact, but the inertia and impact can still cause your neck and shoulders to move rapidly back and forth. Additionally, your seat belt protects you by keeping you in your seat, but it also works against you as it acts as an active restraint for your neck and shoulders. These motions can dislocate bones in the spine and the disks between the bones. The impact can also damage bones, muscles, ligaments, nerves, and tissues.
Common Neck and Shoulder Injuries
If you’ve been in a car accident, it’s likely you’ll sustain a neck or shoulder injury, even if it’s mild. To prepare for and treat possible injuries, here are a few common neck and shoulder injuries that could happen in a car accident.
Whiplash is one of the most common neck and shoulder injuries from a car accident, if not the most common. Whiplash happens when your neck jerks rapidly forward and back, damaging the soft tissue. Symptoms can include neck pain, shoulder pain, limited range of motion, or tingling in your arms. Sometimes whiplash might not show its symptoms right away because of the shock and adrenaline. When they do, seek medical attention. Without proper treatment, you can risk developing chronic pain in your neck, chronic headaches, and even tinnitus.
2.Neck or Clavicle Fractures
If you have severe pain in your neck or shoulders, it’s possible that you could have a fracture in the neck or clavicle. These can be very dangerous and severely limiting if not treated right away. You will be put into a neck brace or sling and your injuries might require surgery.
3.Torn Rotator Cuff
When your shoulders absorb the impact of the car accident, it can commonly lead to a torn rotator cuff. This happens when you tense up or sustain trauma to the shoulder. Symptoms of a torn rotator cuff include intense shoulder pain, limited movement, inability to raise your arm, and shoulder weakness. It’s important to have the extent of your injury diagnosed as large tears may need surgery.
4. Other Sprains and Strains
Accidents That Cause Neck and Shoulder Injuries
These crashes are the reason why it’s so important to have cars that have crumple zones. Crumpling allows the force of motion to flow through instead of having a short, brutal stop. The steel frame is designed to take the blow of the crash and protect the passengers. While you may still sustain injuries, they are less likely to be severe or fatal when compared to cars without crumple zones.
Treatments for Neck and Shoulder Injuries
If you have neck and shoulder injuries after your car accident, you may need to seek alternate methods of treatment to help manage or eliminate the pain. At Essential Chirocare, our chiropractic and physical therapy techniques target the root cause of your pain and treat it so you can move forward with your life. To take your next step to a pain-free life, contact us at Essential Chirocare for your complimentary consultation.