When you sustain an injury in a car accident, sometimes the pain from those injuries lingers for months, or even years, after the event. Learning to manage that pain can sometimes be a challenge. You will have medications and exercises from your pain management doctor, but there are other chronic pain treatments you can do as well than can sometimes make an improvement.
Here are some ideas for managing chronic pain after a car accident.
1. Move as much as possible.
Pain can get worse if you become sedentary. You might not feel like moving much when you are hurting, but if you do not move during the day, beyond basic necessary motions, than you can develop joint and muscle pain. Your ligaments and fascia can also become stiff, making it harder for you to become more mobile in the future.
Intense exercise might be beyond you, but try to prioritize a morning or evening walk, a light weight lifting routine, or a leisurely bike ride. This way, you can prevent further damage to your body, which results in increased pain.
2. Take advantage of alternative care.
Alternative care, like chiropractic treatment and acupuncture, can help immensely with car accident injury pain. Some chiropractors train specifically to work on car accident injuries, including whiplash and other neck injuries, as well as back pain and hip problems. Make sure you let your doctor and physical therapist know what treatments you get, and try to find a chiropractor with a good reputation. You might even ask for a recommendation from your normal physician.
3. Go to all of your rehabilitation appointments.
Some car accident injuries, especially those to joints, the spine, or the neck, take a long time to properly treat. You should not bail on treatment early because you are feeling better, because these nagging injuries can return if they are not properly healed. Sometimes, you might need to plan on attending therapy for years in order to keep the pain level in check. If your are worried about affording the cost of on-going therapy, make sure you discuss this problem with a car accident attorney; they can help you get a cash settlement from your insurance company, or from the other driver's insurance, for the financial burden of your injury.
4. Manage your weight.
Excess weight can aggravate chronic pain conditions, because it increases the stress on your body. Try to keep a healthy diet of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein sources.