Why Does Pain Increase after an Accident?

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As the rainy season begins in October in Portland, OR, the road becomes slippery.  Wet road condition can contribute to many car crash, thus injuries.   Although people often experience whiplash and pain in various parts of the body immediately following a motor vehicle accident (MVA), it is often the case that they may feel worse as time goes compared to the day it happened.   One reason for this is inflammation and swelling that occurs around injured joints, ligaments, and muscles. 

As your body begins to heal, chemicals that promote inflammation are released from damaged tissues and swelling occurs.  These inflammatory factors promote a pain response that increases symptoms after the car accident as time goes by.  Common symptoms of the healing process include swelling, pain, redness, heat, stiffness, and achiness.  Muscles often tighten and spasm around affected joints following an auto injury.  This spasm can be very painful and contribute to pain in the days and weeks following an auto collision.

In this acute phase after an injury, it is best to avoid using heat.  Heat can increase fluid and swelling in the affected area.  Instead, try using ice which can help decrease symptoms in this initial phase of healing.  Ice helps control swelling and inflammation. 

Pain medication can help manage symptoms, but many pain medications slow healing.  Additionally, you may not be as careful with yourself without the sense of pain.

Seek chiropractic treatment from a Chiropractor as soon as possible if you have been injured in an automobile accident.

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