Even if you walk away from a car accident without significant injuries, it is common to experience minor issues like scrapes or bruises, along with muscle aches, pains, and soreness. While treatment to address underlying conditions may take time, you may seek immediate relief for this discomfort and wonder how long you should be sore after a car accident. As you work on recovery, there are steps you can take to relieve muscle pain and encourage healing in addition to your treatment plan.
Water is extremely helpful to muscles in general, and even more so when they’re healing. Muscles that are not properly hydrated can’t function as they should, which causes tightening and cramps. When you’re already sore, these issues can exacerbate that pain. Because your muscles are already stressed because of your injury, the extra fluid keeps them from tightening and becoming more painful, as well as helping them to heal more quickly.
As you heal, massage therapy is also a great way to relieve pain and encourage recovery in your muscles. This can include general massage, stone therapy, or deep tissue massage. Your muscles are deep within the body, meaning a deep tissue massage may be helpful to reach those muscles and allow them to relax after an accident. It is important to share details of your accident with your massage therapist so that they do not perform any massage that worsens an injury.
If you have sustained nearly any muscle injury, physical therapy can be beneficial for your healing. You will work with a therapist who can design a personalized routine for you, tailored to your goals and injuries. Your physical therapy program may include a series of stretches, light exercise that increases over time, and dietary changes. The work you do in physical therapy may initially prolong how long you should be sore after a car accident, but it allows you to heal properly and fully, making it worth the effort.
Stretching and Yoga
When the muscles are stressed by an event like a car accident, stretching can help relieve the stiffness they have built up. Yoga or any form of stretching that involves deep breathing and a range of motion are helpful, as they give your body extra oxygen to improve muscle function while relaxing the muscles. The combination of these factors can help your whole body, including your muscles, to relax and promote recovery.
Getting Enough Rest
Just like when you are healing from a cold or flu and need to rest, the same is true of your muscles when they are injured. While light exercise and therapy are important, you also need to give your muscles time to rest and recover from the damage they experienced during your accident. It is also important to take a break from work after a car accident to allow your muscles to recover. There is no set amount of rest you need, so you should strive to listen to your body and when you feel your muscles are being overworked, or they become sorer, rest may be in order.
When You May Need Medical Treatment
While some soreness will go away with time and care, most car accident injuries should be evaluated by a doctor early on. Even if you do not think you have anything more than soreness, it is important to visit a professional who can help diagnose and identify any underlying conditions injuries, especially ones that have not yet begun to cause you trouble. If you do not identify any specific injuries, it is still important to be careful and pay attention to your soreness over time. It can also be helpful to your insurance claim or legal proceedings to have documentation of a doctor visit quickly so that any future medical bills can be tied to the accident.
If you feel pain that worsens significantly or sharp pains, it is important to seek medical treatment in a timely manner.
Treatment for Soreness
Whether you have a specific concern to bring up or simply want to discuss how long you should be sore after a car accident, AICA Orthopedics is here for you. With a team of specialists that includes chiropractors, orthopedists, physical therapists, and pain management specialists, AICA Orthopedics will create an individualized plan that meets your needs. You do not have to live with soreness after an accident or try to manage the pain yourself- seek care from an expert at AICA Orthopedics today to begin a path to healing and pain relief.