Low Back Pain

man dealing with low back pain after an accident in new york

Experiencing Low Back Pain After an Accident? Here’s Why

Nothing is as scary or life-alerting as being involved in an unexpected accident. Vehicular collisions, accident at work, slip and falls happen every day and while some are relatively minor, many of them result in serious or even fatal injuries. If you have been injured in an auto accident, you may be suffering form low back pain. In fact, low back pain is one of the most common side effects following an automobile accident. What you may not realize is that this low back pain can be more than just tight muscles or a few aches and pains—it can be an indication of a serious injury.

Here’s what every person needs to know about low back pain and how to get the proper treatment for this condition following a car accident.

Why Is Low Back Pain So Common Following a Car Accident?

When a car collision occurs it involves a great deal of force, whether the car is running into a stationary structure or hitting another vehicle. When this happens, the force of the collision, along with the stop in momentum caused by a seat belt, dashboard or car door will eventually stop this motion. This jerking motion and change in force can generate a great deal of pressure on the spine and is known as whiplash.

Whiplash injuries can cause serious neck and back pain. The spine is not designed to handle this type of extreme force and it can result in injuries to the discs or the facet joints along the spinal column. The lower portion of the back or the lumbar section of the spine is particularly sensitive to this whiplash motion.

In fact, low back pain is the most common type of back pain. With more than 80% of Americans reporting issues with low back pain at some point in their lives. The low back is so susceptible to injury following an extreme collision like a car accident, because it is the most elastic part of the spine.

The Different Types of Low Back Injuries

There are a few different types of low back injuries that are common following a car accident. These include:

  • Disc Injuries: When the actual intervertebral disc between the joints is injured. This includes injuries such as herniated or bulging discs.
  • Muscular Injuries: When something as traumatic as a car collision occurs, the body tends to naturally tense up before impact. This can cause serious strain and damage to the muscles along the back.
  • Spinal Fractures: When the bones along the spine are damaged from the impact of a collision. This is common in rear-ending accidents. Most people notice pain that worsens upon movement.
  • Facet Joint Injuries: When the joints along the spinal column and in the lumbar spine and injured as a result of impact. These are the protruding joints along the spine that prevent the back from hyperextending or twisting.

The best way to determine whether or not one of these types of injuries is at the root of your back pain is to visit a New York area doctor right away for an examination.

Seeing Medical Care for Low Back Pain

If you are experiencing low back pain following a car accident, it is important that you seek professional care right away. Seeing a doctor for your low back pain will not only help you with the recovery process, but it will help make sure that your injuries and treatments are documented for insurance purposes. This is essential in the state of New York. If your low back injury was a result of a work-related accident, make sure that your doctor is NY WCB (Worker’s Compensation Board) rated.

Remember, with whiplash injuries, sometimes low back pain won’t appear for hours, days or even weeks following the trauma—so even if you aren’t experiencing pain right away, you may still have sustained a serious injury and one the requires proper medical attention.