When your doctor recommends that you complete physical therapy in Atlanta to help with your car accident injuries, you might wonder how much benefit there is to this type of treatment. It can be helpful to think of physical therapy in relation to rehabilitating after the accident and helping to get you back to functioning even better than you were before. Physical therapy is often used in tandem with other treatment approaches to provide you with the best comprehensive care in treating your car accident injuries.
After initial treatment for car accident injuries, you might notice the aches and pains haven’t gone away like you thought they would, or you start to notice how you aren’t able to participate in activities like you used to. Sore, stiff muscles and frequent headaches don’t have to be something you just deal with after a car accident. Instead, physical therapy can help you heal and get back to your usual routines.
Here are 4 benefits and reasons why you need physical therapy after a car accident:
1. Accelerate Recovery Time
It might surprise you to know that those who participate in physical therapy as part of their treatment plan for a car accident injury often end up recovering quicker than those who don’t. Instead of waiting on your injury to affect how you live your life and complete your daily routines, an Atlanta physical therapist will work with you from the beginning to help identify areas that need to be strengthened so you can best recover. The sooner you get started on treatment for your injury, the better your chances of a full recovery.
Physical therapy incorporates a variety of treatment options including stretching and exercising, both of which help keep your blood flowing and your muscles moving. While rest is important to your healing process, it is just as important to not rest your affected muscles too much so that you can avoid the pain and stiffness that sets in over disuse. Seeing a physical therapist is a combination of treating and repairing your injured area as well as strengthening the area so you can experience full healing.
2. Reduce Pain
The stretching and exercises your physical therapist will likely recommend are partly done to help reduce your pain symptoms after you have been injured in a car accident. When you start to move your body gently and with a physical therapist’s guidance after an accident, you begin to restore proper blood flow to the area, which helps bring oxygen and other nutrients to the injured area. Each type of stretch or exercise is used to target your specific type of car accident injury, whether you suffered from whiplash, injured your back, or dislocated your shoulder.
Another benefit to reducing pain with physical therapy is that this can lower your need to use strong pain killers through your treatment and beyond. Many people are looking for more natural pain relief options than medications in order to avoid expensive medication costs and may be worried about dependence on pain medication. Physical therapy can help provide pain relief by encouraging your body to more naturally heal itself.
3. Increase Strength
You may have broken your arm in a car accident and wonder how physical therapy could possibly be beneficial for you. The truth is, an injury to a bone doesn’t exist on its own without affecting other parts of your arm and the rest of your body. When you have a broken bone and it is in a cast for a long time, the temptation may be to overcompensate by using the other arm for more activities. A physical therapist can help you increase your strength on the injured side of your body so your muscles won’t be quite so sore when you get the cast off and are able to use both arms like normal.
Additionally, strengthening areas of injury can help you avoid re-injuring the area in the future. In order to get back to your daily routines and schedule as soon as possible, it is helpful to increase and improve your strength, especially in the muscles surrounding your injury. When you have a neck injury after a car accident like a slipped disc, a physical therapist will develop a treatment plan that will include strengthening the muscles that support your head and neck so the vertebrae can heal properly.
4. Restore Range of Motion
If you have ever been stiff and sore after a particularly strenuous workout then you have likely also noticed how that can affect your range of motion for a day or two. Each time you reach for something on a high cabinet or sit down into a low chair you might groan or wince until the pain subsides. With a car accident injury, this type of pain and discomfort can be tenfold. One of the main goals of physical therapy is to help you restore and even improve your range of motion after an injury.
A neck injury after a car accident can cause pain and discomfort when you turn your head from side to side. A physical therapist will work with you to slowly introduce stretches and exercises into your treatment plan that help to gently restore your range of motion in your neck so you can turn your head with ease. Similarly, if you don’t seek treatment for a car accident injury right away, you might experience this type of stiffness over a longer period of time and your physical therapist can help you avoid this chronic, long-term damage