Most people think of lower back pain as being associated with sitting too long at a desk or an injury from improper listing, but car accidents are another common cause of pain in the lumbar spine. While this part of your spine isn’t necessarily as likely to be moved on impact, the complex construction of the lower back leaves it vulnerable to many injuries. In addition to being susceptible to injuries, the lower back also usually needs to be treated by a professional chiropractor in Conyers. If you have suffered a car accident that led to pain in the lower back, you are likely seeking out ways to address the pain and reverse the root cause. Read on to learn more about how this can be achieved.
About the Lumbar Spine
The lower back, also known as the lumbar spine, is formed by a number of structures: vertebral bones, intervertebral discs, nerves, muscles, ligaments, and blood vessels. The top of the lumbar spine is where the spinal cord stops, leaving the remaining nerve root to stretch down the remainder of the spinal canal. This is also where the sciatic nerve, the longest nerve in the body, begins. These structures make the lower spine sturdy and flexible, but also leave it vulnerable to high-stress loads.
Much of the mobility we enjoy as humans is due to the lumbar spine. For example, the spinal nerves that branch off of the spinal cord control movements and sensations in the leg, allowing us to walk and run. Truncal movements, including front and backward, side to side, and twisting movements are also controlled by this level.
The vertebrae in the lower back also protect the spinal cord and nerves. And perhaps most importantly, the upper body is stabilized by the lower back, with the strong muscles and ligaments allowing the spine to stay upright and function properly.
The lower back is crucial to proper function and mobility, meaning any damage it may sustain in a lower back injury should be treated as urgent and seen by a chiropractor in Conyers as soon as possible.
Treating Lower Back Pain at Home
Like many car accident injuries, lower back problems will often not display symptoms for hours, days, or weeks after the event. While you should make an appointment with a Conyers chiropractor quickly, you may begin seeking relief as soon as the pain begins. There are steps you can take to be comfortable at home before your appointment begins.
While relying on pain medication is not recommended for a long-term solution, over-the-counter painkillers can be helpful as needed. Ibuprofen is particularly recommended as it can reduce inflammation that may be worsening pain.
In the first days of symptoms, rest will be important. Avoid any strenuous activity and sitting for long periods of time. As you rest, you may want to use ice in short bursts to reduce swelling. If you need to treat symptoms for more than a few days, switching to heat is recommended. While resting from heavy activity remains important, you should make sure to move gently in order to stretch the back and maintain strength.
Professional Help for Lower Back Pain
Most things you do at home are designed to help you manage pain, but not to address the root cause of your pain. A chiropractor in Conyers will be able to perform a complete physical evaluation to determine what type of injury you may have sustained. This will help them to determine what type of treatment will be most helpful and design a plan based on your personal needs.
Chiropractic adjustments are a common way to address lower back pain. By manually manipulating the spine, a chiropractor will be able to address any misalignments that were caused by the impact of the accident, allowing the spine to work as it should more quickly. These adjustments will be ongoing and will likely be paired with physical therapy, which will help the muscles to strengthen.
In most cases, a combination of these techniques will be enough to facilitate your recovery. In the case of more severe injuries to the spine or the discs, you may be referred to a neurologist or orthopedist to discuss more invasive options like surgery.
At AICA Conyers, our team is comprised of all these experts and more, allowing them to work together to make an accurate and comprehensive diagnosis. This allows AICA Conyers to create treatment plans designed for your lower back injury specifically. If you want to know how to find a doctor after an accident, contact us today to get started.