Utah requires that all auto insurance policies have a minimum of $3,000 per person for medical care. If your injuries require more than $3,000 in medical care, our office can guide you through your available options. Because of the large number of auto accident victims we help, we are well versed in how to best help you through this difficult and often confusing time.
Every one of our patients will receive an initial diagnostic exam which will help us determine your injuries and work with you to create a treatment plan. These treatments plans are individual and unique to each person and may include chiropractic care, massage therapy, physical rehabilitation exercises, and a number of supportive therapies such as Intersegmental Traction therapy, Electric Muscle Stimulation, and more.
Emergency Rooms are very important for those with life-threatening injuries but please remember, their job is to offer lifesaving care and stabilize you. Their primary focus is not long-term, supportive care.
This is the best time to schedule an appointment with our clinic. Many people leave the emergency room in stable condition not realizing that many injuries and symptoms can show up days or even weeks after an auto accident.
Because we specialize in this type of care, we know what to look for and how to find those injuries that, though not life-threatening, can be debilitating and painful once they appear. If these injuries are not treated properly, they can cause problems for years to come.
A common but big mistake is letting too much time pass before having your injuries evaluated. Even in minor accidents, it is common for bones along your spine to become misaligned which can lead to irritation that causes your whole body to not move properly. These injuries can even cause your spinal bones to get stuck in improper positions leading to pinched nerves and radiating pain or muscle spasms.
It is critical to get appropriate chiropractic adjustments throughout your recovery process. Ignoring or delaying treatment can make corrections very difficult to change later.
Many people feel their worst pain 2-3 days after the accident. The stress on your spine and joints that become stuck or misaligned can start the process of degeneration and lead to arthritis and pain over time. Even with no initial pain, seeking treatment right after an accident can help you avoid pain and discomfort later in life and prevent further damage.
No and no. We work with all auto insurance companies in Utah to bill them even if you have not contacted an attorney. By law, if you have auto insurance in Utah, you have medical coverage.
After an auto accident, even if you did not receive life-threatening injuries, many people suffer from intense muscle pain and stiffness and damage to the back and spine. Chiropractors are able to treat this neck and back pain as well as help with sprains, injuries, knee pain, foot pain, shoulder pain, wrist pain, and headaches. If left untreated these injuries can cause serious pain, discomfort, and further harm in the future.
After an auto accident, some people experience symptoms of whiplash right away while others may show symptoms days later. Some patients report an increase in pain for 2 to 3 days after an auto accident when they do not seek immediate treatment. These symptoms can include blurred vision, headaches, shoulder pain, ringing in the ears, dizziness, reduced range of motion, and arm pain. Whiplash can also result in back injuries, muscle injuries, ligament problems, and disc damage.
Seeking medical treatment for yourself should never be secondary to taking your car to a mechanic or working with your insurance company. Your first priority should be taking the initiative to visit a chiropractor.
The absolute first thing you should do after an accident is get yourself and any others involved to a safe place. You should then contact the police who can file a police report which will be vital in determining fault as well as help with insurance claims. If you need medical care, let the police dispatcher know so they can send the needed medical team to provide care.
If you are able to take photos of the accident, please do. They are very useful to insurance companies in determining fault and making decisions on claims. However, your health and wellbeing come first. If you need medical treatment, seek that first. Many experience confusion or shock after an accident and taking photos may not be something you think to do at the time. If you are unable to take photos, you will be able to rely on police reports for filing with insurance companies.
If the person who hit you does not have any insurance, never take cash on the spot. It may seem like an appealing offer but beyond the visible damage, there could be hidden structural damage. You may also want to consider adding coverage to your own insurance plan that protects you in these instances. If you have that, your insurance will most likely cover the repair costs. Also, get a police report so you have all of the information you need for your insurance company.
If the driver who is at fault has auto insurance, that insurance may cover any medical procedures and treatments you have. However, their insurance company would need to provide proof that they will pay for your medical bills. Unfortunately, most insurances avoid signing this agreement. If it gets to that point, your best option would be to hire a personal injury attorney who can sign a lien with your doctors agreeing to cover medical bills while they actively pursue your settlement.
Most people will experience some form of discomfort after an auto accident. With larger, more traumatic accidents, some injuries are obvious. With smaller accidents, some people do not know they are hurt right away. Some symptoms can show up a few days to a few years after an accident. Because of this, in Utah, a personal injury claim can be made up to 4 years after an accident. Our office has treated people 18-24 months after their accident who are experiencing headaches and pain they didn’t have before the accident. We are able to take an x-ray and see levels of degeneration in the spine caused by instability of the spinal bones. Symptoms to watch for either immediately after or later after an accident are:
- Neck Pain
- Lower back pain
- Arm or leg pain
- Upper or middle back pain
- Rib Pain
- Other pain or discomfort
We recommend that any person who has been in an auto accident, no matter how severe, should seek treatment with a Chiropractor to evaluate to perform neurological or orthopedic tests to determine if there is any damage done. Chiropractors can then build a specific treatment plan unique to you and your injuries.
Immediately after an accident, most people seek medical care to help with obvious, more urgent injuries. Often these treatments do not help with long term repair of the body in ensuring effective care of the unstable or sprained segments of the spine. As long as there is not a break or a completely torn ligament leading to severe instability of a section requiring surgery, the best treatments for the body to recover are:
- Passive Therapy to reduce pain
- Correct the misalignments through Chiropractic care
- Massage from a Licensed Massage Therapist to work out the tense muscles at the proper time
- Active Exercises to stretch the tight muscles and strengthen the area.
- Depending on the severity of injuries, co-treat with other practitioners to make sure the patient is getting the best care possible.
Please remember that some injuries can take time to treat properly and effectively. Even though it takes time, it will be well worth it.
When someone is in a traffic accident, along with the visible injuries, there may be injuries we can’t see, such as herniated discs, neck and back pain, misalignments in the vertebrae, and severe headaches and head pain. There is simply no such thing as a “trivial” head, neck, or spinal injury. Chiropractic therapy treats these injuries “holistically” without using drugs or conducting surgical procedures.
If you have sustained an injury in an auto accident that was not your fault and it is preventing you from returning to work and earning money that you would have otherwise normally received, then you are owed compensation for your lost wages. Compensation for lost wages can include:
- Wages for hours, days, weeks, or months in which you could not work.
- Lost earning capacity. If the accident left you with a long-term or permanent disability preventing you from ever being able to return to work or a specific type of work.
- Lost opportunities like missing a job interview or promotion.
To file a claim for lost wages, you need a letter from your physician describing your injuries and how long they kept you from working and a letter from your employer verifying the exact amount of work missed due to your injuries.
Studies have shown that the damage done to a vehicle is not necessarily related to the damage to the passengers. Because of this, all auto accident injuries need to be immediately evaluated by a qualified chiropractor.
During the impact of an accident, your neck is forcibly “whipped” back and forth and side to side past its normal range of motion. As a result, whiplash injuries can affect the muscles and tissues in your back and neck. Stiffness, back pain and/or neck pain can ensue immediately or take days, weeks or even months to appear. It is crucial to treat whiplash immediately even if you are not yet experiencing neck or back pain.
Headaches and migraines are common symptoms that can occur as a result of whiplash injuries or any type of motor vehicle injury. Headaches may appear when specific vertebrae in your neck are restricted and out of position due to the impact of an accident. Sprained neck muscles can cause pain to radiate to your head. Any injuries or traumas to your head can cause headaches and migraines. If you are experiencing headaches after your car accident, then you should get treated as soon as possible so that your headache pain does not become permanent.
Chiropractic doctors are well-trained professionals, especially in car accident recovery. They use alternative treatments like hands-on spinal manipulation, which saves a patient having to go through a surgical treatment. Spinal manipulation, otherwise known as the osteopathic manipulative treatment, is a common chiropractic technique used for back injuries. It is non-invasive and can save you ample amounts of pain in the future. Chiropractors focus on wellness so you can be assured you are in good hands. Chiropractic care is also significantly cheaper than undergoing surgery.
This question is best answered on a case by case basis. It depends on the extent of the injuries and the patient’s natural ability to recover. However, the results are long-lasting.
In many cases, you do not need a referral to make an appointment for a chiropractic evaluation. Chiropractors are portal of entry doctors, meaning you do not need a referral to see a chiropractor unlike some health care specialties such as physical therapy. If you have health care insurance, check with your insurance to see if your health care coverage includes chiropractic benefits. If not, the doctor can come up with a special individualized plan to make your care affordable. Finances will not be a hindrance for you to get the care that you may possibly need and deserve.
The forces put on your body during a car accident can alter the biomechanical function of the spine and extremities. If left untreated, these can rapidly increase your risk for Osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis can ruin the integrity of the discs that sit in between your vertebra leading to Degenerative Disc Disease and scar tissue formation. The accumulation of Degenerative Disc Disease and scar tissue formation can result in ruined posture (a hump-backed appearance), chronic pain and stiffness, and an inability to bend and twist as you once did.
Typically, if you are seen in the hospital for your car accident injury the staff will check your vital signs, do any necessary imaging to rule out life-threatening conditions and release you with pain medication. While pain medication may help the symptoms, they do not correct any structural damage or soft tissue issues that you may have. These un-treated issues will lead to future problems.
After a car accident, some people quickly realize they are injured. Fractures, lacerations, and other injuries typically present with clear symptoms, such as pain. Others don’t show or feel any immediate signs of injury. Sometimes, serious injuries don’t result in symptoms for hours or even days after a car accident. Some of the symptoms are:
- Blood clot or brain injury
- Neck and shoulder pain
- Spinal injury
- Back pain
- Ligament injury
- Herniated disk