Did you know that in a car accident you can hurt your back in several different ways? This may come as a surprise since your back remains mostly stationary in the seat if you’re buckled up, but this doesn’t prevent injuries from affecting your back.
If you’ve been in a car accident, you should visit a doctor for a medical examination. Even if you don’t feel any pain yet, you may have the hidden symptoms of an injury developing in your back and other parts of your body.
Five injuries that cause back pain after a car accident
- Pulled or torn muscle — Despite being held in place by a seat belt, your body can still be jerked around in a car accident. This jerking around can cause strain in the muscles of your back.
Strains are when your muscles and soft tissue stretch or tear. This is painful and can limit the range of motion of your back.
- Slipped disc — The discs between the vertebrae in your spine help protect the spine from shock in an impact. However, enough force applied to the spine can cause one of the discs to burst. When this happens, the fluid from the disc escapes and spreads into its surrounding area, putting pressure on the nerves in the spinal canal and causing pain.
- Sciatica — Pressure on your lower back in an accident can cause inflammation in the sciatic nerve, which forms a condition known as sciatica. This is a long nerve strand that runs from the lower back into each of your legs. When you have sciatica, this nerve can feel like it’s burning and tingling in your lower back and one of your legs.
- Fracture — The force from an impact can be strong enough to cause one or more of the bones in your back to break. Fractures can range from minor hairline fractures to total breaks or shattering. Fractures should always be taken seriously. If you have intense and sudden spine pain after an accident, especially when trying to move, you may have a fracture. Stay still and wait for help.
- Spinal stenosis — Spinal stenosis is the narrowing of the spinal canal. When this happens, pressure increases on the nerves in the spine. This condition usually develops over time in conjunction with chronic conditions like arthritis, but a car accident can cause it to develop immediately.
Visit the iRISE Spine and Joint Institute for back pain treatment
Do you have back pain after a recent car accident? Are you not sure if you’re hurt but need to visit a doctor for an examination? Our team at the Florida Spine and Joint Institute can examine your condition and provide the right treatment to help you recover. Contact our team today for more information about back pain after a car accident or to schedule an initial appointment.