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Why Does My Body Ache So Bad After a Car Accident?

With more than 650 muscles in the human body, it’s no wonder why muscle pain is so common after a car accident. Trauma from a car accident can severely damage the soft tissues of the body. After an accident, muscle pain is often caused by soft tissue injuries like sprains, strains, and whiplash.

Learn more about muscle aches after an accident from our pain management team at Impact Medical Wesley Chapel.

Pain After an Accident

Your body’s hundreds of muscles are necessary to keep you mobile. After an accident, these muscles become stretched, torn, and inflamed. Without proper medical treatment, damage to your muscles can permanently impact your mobility and your livelihood.

If you think you have suffered a muscle injury from a car crash, now is the time to seek medical attention. A medical professional can create a treatment plan to get you back on your feet.

Common Symptoms of Muscle Injuries

Car accident victims primarily suffer skeletal muscle injuries or damage to the muscles that attach to bones and help move limbs.

These muscles are found from head to toe, so the symptoms of muscle injuries after a car accident will vary depending on where the injury occurred.

Some of the most common symptoms of muscle injuries include: 

  • Stiffness
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Muscle Spasms
  • Upper back pain
  • Lower back pain
  • Burning or tingling
  • Severe muscle aches
  • Swelling and inflammation
  • Bruising or discoloration
  • Sore muscles when not moving
  • Numbness in the toes and fingers

The skin above a muscle injury may feel warm to the touch so you may experience a heating sensation as blood rushes to protect and heal the injured muscles.

What Causes Body Aches After an Accident?

Muscles are the most common body parts damaged in a car accident. This is even more true for car accident victims who grip their steering wheel or throw their arms out to shield their faces before impact.

When muscles are in motion or extended during a crash, the energy of the collision can severely damage muscle fibers in the soft tissue. The blunt force trauma caused by an accident can also cause muscle pain and soreness.

Common Accident Muscle Injuries

If you are experiencing muscle aches after an accident, medical treatment is necessary to diagnose and treat your injury accurately.

Common injuries that cause muscle aches include:

  • Muscle and Tendon Strains: Both tendons and muscles can stretch or tear during a car accident-causing strain.
  • Ligament Sprains: Ligaments are a type of connective tissue that attaches one bone to another. A ligament sprain occurs when this tissue is stretched or torn.
  • Whiplash: Whiplash occurs when the soft tissue in the head and neck are overstretched or ripped due to a rapid back-and-forth motion.
  • Facet Joint Injuries: Facet joints connect the bones in the spine. A facet joint injury happens when the spinal bones are shifted out of place.
  • Herniated discs: A herniated disc occurs when a spinal disc is torn or punctured due to trauma.
  • Pinched Nerves: The spinal column has 31 spinal nerves, all of which can become compressed or pinched due to inflammation or an injury in the neck or back.
  • Seat belt or airbag injuries: Though seatbelts and airbags are lifesavers, they can compress and damage internal organs and muscles during a car crash.

Any of the above injuries can present symptoms at the time of the accident, but many also create delayed pain and symptoms in the following days.

After an accident, err on the side of caution and visit a doctor.

How Long Will I Be Sore?

After a collision, most patients wonder how long the pain and soreness will last. Though every situation is different and depends on the severity of the damage, it is common to be sore for up to six weeks.

More severe injuries can take several months to heal.

What Kind of Doctor Should I See for Muscle Pain?

If you are in pain after a car accident, you should visit the emergency room, your primary care doctor, or our accident clinic at Impact Medical Wesley Chapel.

Once you have received a diagnosis for your muscle pain, your doctor may refer you to a specialist who is knowledgeable about your specific injury.

These specialists may include:

  • Physical therapists for strains, sprains, or whiplash.
  • Chiropractors for whiplash, facet joint injuries, or herniated discs.
  • Neurologists for pinched nerves or tingling.

Get Pain Relief Today

If you have been in a car accident and are suffering from muscle aches and pain, don’t hesitate to reach out to our team at Impact Medical Wesley Chapel. We will design a treatment plan to relieve your pain and get you on the path to healing.

Schedule an appointment with our team today at (813) 953-1002!