04 Feb Lower Back Pain After a Car Accident.
Many times, people are surprised to hear that their lower back pain is a result of a car accident injury. Lower back pain is a very common symptom after a car accident. I want to talk about how the low back gets injured when in a car accident and the most common types of injuries that can occur.
The lower back is very susceptible to injury when you are an occupant in a car that is involved in a car accident, especially if you are wearing your seat belt. Your seat belt is a life saving device…however, it can increase the rate of injury to your neck and lower back. When you are wearing your seat belt the lap harness keeps your pelvis tight against the seat. Also, the sitting position puts your lumbar spine in a compromised position to begin with.
During a car accident at the moment of impact the forces throw your body around in all sorts of directions, because of the lap belt and being seated the forces to your lumbar spine are extremely high and the way the torso get’s thrown around will almost always cause injury to the tissues in the lumbar spine.
The most common injury in the low back when you have been in a car accident is injury to the lumbar joint ligaments. This injury is very similar to a sprained ankle, knee or any other joint. The joint gets stretched past it’s normal limit and the ligaments get torn or stretched. The type of pain it causes is pain in the low back that is either centralized or could be on the side of the injury.
The second most common injury is injury to the lumbar discs. Again, due to the forces and the way your body and torso get’s thrown around it can cause the disc to tear or the herniate. When the disc herniates, it will usually cause symptoms that radiate down you leg and cause feelings of numbness, tingling or aching in the buttocks and leg.
One other type of tissue that can get injured is the low bac muscles. Typically, the muscles do not get injured even though they feel sore. The soreness you feel in the low back muscles usually is referral pain from the joint injury. Also trigger points, or muscle knots, develop around the joint injuries. So many times, your muscles feel tight or sore and may have knots but those are usually secondary to the joint or disc injury.
The most important thing you can do after an accident, is to determine what exactly is injured and how severe the injury is, then to get evaluated by a physician who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of car accident injuries. At Spinal Rehab of North County, we have over 20 years combined experience treating people who have been injured in car accidents. We are experts at diagnosing these types of injuries. We know when to refer for advanced testing like MRI or when to refer to a specialist.
If you or someone you know has been in a car accident and is experiencing low back pain or neck pain, then call our office immediately. We will see you today and let you know what is causing your pain and what needs to be done to get better. When you are getting treatment due to an auto accident there is no out of pocket costs for that treatment. We can help with filing the claim and with the insurance process. Call to schedule or get any questions answered 801-492-9300