Spinal Injuries: A Car Accident Nightmare

back pain

During an accident, injuries are quite common. From bruises to lacerations, there are a lot of injuries that a person can sustain. Injuries to the spine however are more frequent than others. From the cervical to the lumbar region of your spine, the entire spinal region is highly delicate and provides a foundation to perform daily functions with ease.

Whether your accident was minor or you have been in a major accident, its effect on your spine is quite prominent.

Spinal injuries After A Car Accident

We will discuss in detail a few common spinal injuries that can occur during a car accident and what you can do to treat your spine effectively.


The most common injury that almost every person has experienced once in their life is a whiplash. You can get a whiplash injury even if cars collide with each other at a moderate pace. A whiplash injury is often known to cause pain in the neck but, the side-effects can be seen on the spine as well. A rapid to and fro movement of the neck can lead to wear and tear of soft tissues which can result in muscle damage. If you don’t get proper treatment, whiplash can turn into a chronic health issue with years of pain. Therefore, accident & injury chiropractic care is mandatory after an accident. Many patients experience pain from whiplash after 24 to 72 hours but in some cases, the symptoms can take over a week to appear.

Herniated Discs

The human spine is made up of multiple vertebrae. These provide a cover to the jelly-like filling between the vertebrae and protect them from mixing with one another. These discs can be heavily damaged and ruptured due to an accident. Herniated discs are quite common after an accident, especially among older people. For victims of herniated discs, they might experience symptoms like sudden pain peeking through different regions of the body. If you are young and despite the symptoms, you can move easily, simply going for chiropractic care will be enough. However, in more serious cases, you might have to go through surgical adjustments.


In major accidents, fractures are really common. Spinal fractures, however, are the most daunting of them all. An accident where you might feel pressure on your spine that ultimately leads to compression of vertebrae can result in a fracture. A spinal fracture is also known as spondylolisthesis. When your spine is fractured, the vertebra usually dislocates from its original location. The initial symptoms might only be a sharp pain but as soon as the body cools down and the adrenaline rush is over, you might experience serious changes in your body like the inability to move or even talk. Victims who suffer from fractures in their spine are often put to bed rest for a month and their spine is immobilized. After recovery, patients are suggested that they take chiropractic care and physical therapy. For proper recovery, you need to follow the advice of your doctor as they prescribe.

Spinal Cord Damage

Spinal cord injuries and post-accident damage can be the most daunting of them all. The human spinal cord consists of nerves and the Central Nervous System which controls all the functions of the body. Any damage to the spinal cord can result in damage to bones as well as the nervous system. Even though it is possible to repair bones, medical science and professionals are yet to find a treatment for nerve damage. Presently, people who suffer from spinal cord injuries are treated for the bones with the hope that their injury isn’t serious enough to damage the nervous system.

Steps To Take Care of Spine after an Accident

You will need to follow a few basic steps for self-care after coming home after an accident. In case of a minor accident, your doctor will send you home immediately after a thorough examination. However, for major accidents, you might be immobilized for a couple of days (even weeks before you can go home). Self-care is such scenarios are so important because you never know when a single moment of carelessness can actually result in a lifetime of pain and agony.

Once you get home, a few things that you can do to protect yourself from further damage are:

Take Plenty of Rest

Do not worry about any deadlines or anything that comes in the way of you taking a rest. When you get home, take complete rest for at least one to two weeks or until you start feeling yourself. Rest doesn’t always mean physical rest. You need to give your mind a break from all the activities so that it can focus on healing.

Drink a Lot of Water

Staying hydrated will not only remove toxins and pressure built up in your body but will also refresh and relax your mind while providing your body with enough liquid to repair damaged cells.

Do Not Miss Appointments

You need to visit your doctor right after the accident and follow up with him whenever you feel any discomfort. Never reschedule or delay a post-accident appointment even if you are not feeling good. Also, make sure that your doctor is aware of your condition.

Seek Alternate Care

Visit your accident & injury chiropractic professional who will make adjustments to your spine without any further medications.

Healthy Nutrition

Make sure that you are eating plenty of healthy proteins as they will help you feel a lot better and heal your injuries much faster.


The spine is the most sensitive part of your body and you can easily injure your spine after an accident. In many cases, people tend to suffer from spinal injuries after the most minor accidents. Whiplash, fractures, and spinal cord damage are some of the most common injuries after an accident. You need to take care of yourself when you get home so that the injuries do not worsen. With proper diet and hydration, you can also heal injuries and get much better physically and mentally.