Warning: Fender Benders
By Dr. George Bobbitt
Oh my! Everywhere I look cars are crashing into things and other vehicles. Trucks sliding backwards as they try to accelerate up a slight incline. I see both cars and trucks stuck in mud in the median of the highway, and others trying to drive carefully so they do not lose control.
You have probably figured out what I am referring to- Texas ice and snow. It seems that a lot of us are not very good drivers in this stuff.
This past week our office has been bombarded with calls from people suffering from injuries do to fender benders primarily caused by ice and snow related mishaps. Most of these mishaps were not life threatening and seemed to be minor- at least initially. One would have to take a more detailed look to find the real threat resulting from fender benders.
Many people visit the ER and urgent care facilities immediately after an accident, and they are released because they have been found to be stable and to have no broken bones. Upon release, home instructions and medication are given to help with the pain. The good news is that you are going to live. They have done their job. Their job is to make sure that you are stable and no emergencies exist.
So….here is the rest of the story.
In almost every fender bender case I have examined, I have found many malfunctions to the body concerning its muscles, bones and nerves. The impact created from the fender bender shifted the spine thus creating a domino effect throughout the rest of the systems. The effects of the shifting are often subtle early on and take a chiropractor to properly evaluate and discover them.
Most of the time these subtle shifts are missed and ignored because the body starts to heal and feel better within a few weeks. The body will do the best job it can in healing itself, but it does not know to put things back where they belong.
As the body heals, it heals wrong. Scar tissue develops and the injured areas become more sensitive to future irritation and ease of further injury.
Commonly I consult with those in pain. They will say that there pain appeared out of nowhere, and they did nothing to cause it. Upon further investigation, we find out that they had a fender bender 3-4 months ago. As they start to remember, they realize that there complaints have been progressively worse since the accident.
The lack of pain is not a good indicator of health. I hear the patients say “but I was not injured after the accident”, and I say, “How do you know?” One cannot know unless one is fully evaluated by an expert regarding fender benders and motor vehicle related injuries.
One last thought.
When viewing x-rays, I commonly see degenerative changes in the bone and disc spaces. This degeneration is only in certain areas of the spine. These areas at some point were injured and progressively worsened as we aged. Conversely, there are areas in that same spine that look perfect.
What this means is that a certain part of the body was injured in the past. That injury has continued to progress under the “radar” without obviously notifying you. When it resurfaces by alerting you years later, the damage is well on its way to an irreparable chronic condition.
Do not be fooled by a fender bender. Get your body checked by a chiropractor- your future depends on it for health.