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How Long Should I Go to Physical Therapy After an Accident?

auto accident

Did you know that car accident injury is the 4th leading cause of injury-related death in Queens?

We know that it’s not easy to move on —physically and mentally— after getting injured in an auto accident. In addition to the mental lag, there are so many boxes to check, and things to be done.

From dealing with your insurance company to managing repairs, hunting down a new car, or even tackling legal matters, the idea of making time to do physical therapy might seem low in priority.

However, that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Your health should always be a priority, and getting physical therapy after your accident would not only help with any lingering pains but also prevent future complications from arising.

Yet, that begs the question of duration. Just how long should you be going to these physical therapy appointments anyway? Keep on reading for a full breakdown of the benefits of physical therapy and its potential timeline.

Healing From an Auto Accident: How Long Should You Be Going to Physical Therapy?

The short answer would be: it depends on your case.

We know that it might be frustrating to hear that, but the truth of the matter is that different people will need to visit their physical therapist for different amounts of time and frequencies.

For instance, if you’re dealing with a case of whiplash, it might be affecting you a bit differently in comparison to another person suffering from the same condition.

Moreover, car accidents can cause a variety of injuries, and they can also come in compounded forms. They can range from broken bones to soft tissue injuries.

What’s great about physical therapy is its ability to restore function to the injured areas as well as reduce pain.

Yet, it’s important to keep in mind that, in the case of broken bones, physical therapy is rather limited until they’ve healed. This —in turn— brings us back to our timeline.

Range of Motion and Pain Management

If you’re dealing with broken bones, you may have a rough time moving around and getting back your normal range of motion, especially after wearing a cast for 6 weeks.

That’s when physical therapy comes in. As it were, painkillers and muscle relaxers can provide temporary relief from pain, but they’re meant to a short-term solution. A gap stop measure, nothing more.

Furthermore, by the time your bones have healed, you might start noticing other issues and pains popping up.

More likely than not, many patients feel few (if any) symptoms right after a car accident. Only after days or even weeks do they develop clear symptoms of other injuries and sensitivities from the auto accident.

Physical Therapy Timeline

Depending on your case, it may take weeks or months for physical therapy to help your body gain back its regular range of motion, and for your car accident injuries to fully heal.

That’s where discipline becomes essential to achieve a full recovery. You’ll have to go to your physical therapy appointments like clockwork. These appointments may range from once to 3-times a week according to the severity of your injuries.

Why You Should Get Physical Therapy (And Keep up With Your Appointments)

Now that you know the average duration of therapy, we might need a refresher on why it’s all going to be worth it in the end.

In general, there are numerous benefits of physical therapy. But, in the aftermath of car accidents, some of these benefits are compounded.

1. Supports the Recovery Process

As we mentioned before, the actual depth and breadth of your car accident-related injuries won’t fully emerge until you’re starting to get back to your daily routines and normal activities.

You’ll start dealing with stiffness, reduced range of motion, and some head-related pains, like headaches and migraines. In addition, you might start experiencing back pains and aches.

In order to tackle these injuries (and not just numb yourself to the pain with painkillers), it’s critical to undergo physical therapy as it’ll aid with the recovery process.

It’ll help increase your strength, improve your flexibility, and manage your pain symptoms.

2. Prevents Long-Term Complications

There is dealing with immediate pains, and there’s dealing with chronic pain for the rest of your life.

What’s heartbreaking about a car accident is its ability to cause permanent damage in a split of a second. However, getting into physical therapy can prevent long-term damage like chronic pain and migraines from haunting you.

The reason why some of the damage sustained after a car accident becomes permanent is the lack of care and immediate medical attention right after the accident.

These problem areas will stay under the radar unless you proactively look for them in the short-term. Otherwise, they’ll pop up when you least expect them, years down the road.

3. Reduces Pain by Keeping You Physically Active

We know that one of the last things you want to do after a car accident is to move around. However, you’d be surprised by how effective being physically active can be with reducing pain.

As it were, moving gets your oxygenated blood (and other nutrients) to your injured areas faster and with higher quantities. This helps bolster your body’s efforts in healing itself. With every stretch and exercise you do, your body starts getting used to a wider set of motion and function.

All of that accumulates into achieving a well-balanced state, which —in turn— will help you reach complete recovery.

Who Pays For Physical Therapy After A Car Accident?

If you were injured in an auto accident and need physical therapy, it is covered by no-fault and PIP insurance.

Ready to Take Care of Yourself?

Assuming that your recovery can happen in a New York minute can actively hurt you in the long run. That’s why being patient with yourself and your therapy after an auto accident is essential to fully recover.

The benefits of physical therapy after a car accident can fill an encyclopedia.

But, we hope that our breakdown of the potential duration of therapy, as well as the main advantages of getting it, are enough to help you make the decision to prioritize your health.

Moreover, you won’t be alone on your journey.

Call 1-800-897-8440 today to find a doctor near you who specializes in car accident-related injuries and book your appointment. Don’t wait, get help now.


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