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Your First Steps After an Auto Injury

Your First Steps After an Auto Injury

Car accidents happen all of the time, but people aren’t always injured. However, if you’ve been hit or hit someone, and now you’re hurting, there are steps to take to ensure your safety and well-being. Although you may be tempted to worry about your car and insurance, taking care of yourself is the first priority after an accident.

At Pinnacle Health Chiropractic, our team is here for you when you’ve been involved in a crash. Dr. Jason Ablett is our highly skilled chiropractor who offers comprehensive care when it comes to your musculoskeletal system. If you now have chronic pain or migraines after your accident, Dr. Ablett and his team can help.

What to do at the scene of the injury

After you’ve been in an accident, your head is spinning — but it’s important to remember a few key points to ensure your safety. First, check yourself and anyone in your vehicle for injuries. This is important, and should be the first thing you do.

If you’re injured and are unable to get out of the car, have someone in the vehicle or in the other vehicle call 911. This alerts police, fire, and EMS to come to the scene. 

After you check on the people in your car, make sure to check on the other car as well. If more than one person is injured, be sure to relay that information to the 911 operator, so they can send extra EMS personnel.

If you can, move the vehicles out of the roadway for minor accidents. If that’s not possible, and you and your passengers are out of the vehicle, move to the side of the road to exchange insurance information. This is the safest place for all parties involved.

If you’re injured, it’s important to seek care, no matter how minor the injury. Problems tend to arise hours or days after the injury, so early intervention is ideal.

What are common auto injuries?

Injuries from car accidents vary greatly, depending on how you’re hit and how fast the car was traveling. Seat belts also play a role in your injuries, as wearing one greatly reduces your chances of being thrown from the car and suffering more serious bodily harm.

There are a few common injuries that Dr. Ablett and his team see after vehicle accidents, and they include:


Whiplash happens when your neck and back are forced forward and back very quickly due to the impact of the accident. When this occurs, it causes strain on the muscles, tendons, and ligaments in your neck. Whiplash usually resolves after several weeks, but can be very frustrating and painful.

Back pain

Back pain is another common complaint after a car accident. Even when wearing a seatbelt, your body is jolted in ways it normally doesn’t move. This causes strain of the muscles in your neck and back, causing spasms and injury.

Bruised ribs

If your chest hits the steering wheel, or you were hit on your side of the car, you could sustain rib injuries. Bruised and broken ribs are common, and are often very painful and tender for weeks after your accident.

Broken bones

Broken bones can happen in just about any type of car accident, especially if you see it coming. Bracing your body can snap a bone due to the sheer force of the collision.


Hitting your head during the accident sometimes causes chronic headaches or a concussion. Migraines after car accidents can also happen, causing long-term discomfort.

When should you seek medical care?

Anytime you’re involved in a car accident, it doesn’t hurt to be seen by a doctor. Even if you feel fine, your adrenaline is pumping and could mask any injuries that you sustained. The best advice is to seek care right away.

If you do decide to forgo immediate care, it’s important that you keep an eye out for problematic symptoms over the next few days. These symptoms include:

If you just don’t feel like yourself after the accident, make sure to seek help right away. Sometimes it takes days for injuries to become clear, and then it could be more difficult to treat. 

Dr. Ablett provides comprehensive care for pain sustained in a car accident. He offers chiropractic manipulation along with other techniques to ease your pain and get you back to your normal life.

If you’ve been injured in a car accident, don’t hesitate to call our office today to get treatment, or you can schedule an appointment online using the booking tool on our website.

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