According to annual vehicle registration status counts, there are roughly 290 million vehicles in the United States alone. Employees commute to their jobs, school busses drive students to school and back, mail trucks and delivery vehicles transport letters and packages, and people use their vehicles to travel for practical, social, or entertainment purposes. Unfortunately, with this many vehicles on the road, accidents happen. Collisions can cause minor bumps, bruises, cuts, and scrapes, as well as more significant injuries, such as whiplash, concussions, or broken bones. But beyond the physical injuries, a vehicle accident can have lasting mental repercussions.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is very common among victims of a traffic accident. PTSD is a mental health condition that comes as a result of witnessing or experiencing a traumatic event. Whether the incident was a minor fender-bender or it resulted in a totaled vehicle, the effects can be the same. Symptoms include severe anxiety, flashbacks or visions of the inciting incident, and nightmares that center around other aspects or potential outcomes of the accident. The victim may be afraid to drive or even sit as a passenger in a vehicle. These thoughts and feelings are often unwanted and may be classified as “intrusive thoughts.” Intrusive thoughts can be quite debilitating and cause significant emotional distress if not addressed.
So what causes PTSD in collision victims, and how is it treated? The good news is that the root issue is not always entirely mental. Oftentimes, there’s a physiological reason for intrusive thoughts and increased anxiety. Studies have shown that patients who suffered from symptoms of PTSD also held an unusually large amount of stress in their neck. In fact, the accident led to an unhealthy stress management technique that damaged the tissues in the spine, potentially causing psychological problems.
Chiropractic care is a holistic form of alternative medicine. We focus on the spine and the nerves that run throughout. When your spine is properly aligned, you’ll enjoy the fullness of health and wellness. But when your vertebrae are misaligned (subluxated), this can lead to issues. Victims of a car accident would benefit from the gentle, non-invasive spinal adjustments administered by licensed chiropractors. These adjustments will guide the vertebrae and surrounding tissues back into alignment, soothing any symptoms of PTSD.
If you’re ever in a car accident, don’t wait! Seek professional help and make an appointment with your local chiropractor. They will advise you on how to move forward and how best to prevent the onset of PTSD. If you’re looking for a chiropractor, we invite you to join us her at DiBella Chiropractic Center in Gastonia. Drop by our offices during operating hours, or call us today to schedule a consultation!