How Do Doctors Treat Soft Tissue Injuries After an Accident?
Soft tissue injuries after an accident can be painful and frustrating, especially when they interfere with your daily life. If you’ve been in a car accident, it’s critical to seek medical attention for any injury you may have sustained—even if you feel no symptoms.
Injuries to soft tissues may take days or even weeks to surface, and they require prompt treatment to prevent long-term damage, chronic pain, and decreased mobility. Read on to learn about the different options doctors use to treat soft tissues after an accident.
Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation (RICE) Therapy
The first line of treatment for soft tissue injuries is the RICE method. RICE stands for rest, ice, compression, and elevation. The purpose of RICE is to minimize swelling and manage pain. After a car accident and a physical exam, your doctor may recommend that you refrain from activities that cause pain, apply ice to the affected area, use compression to reduce swelling, and elevate the injury above heart level.
Physical therapy is a common treatment option for accident-related soft tissue injuries. Physical therapy helps prevent long-term muscle, joint, and tissue damage. It can also help you regain strength and flexibility. A physical therapist uses specialized exercises and techniques to improve circulation, strengthen muscles, increase range of motion, and reduce pain.
In severe cases, surgery may be necessary to repair the damage. For example, if a ligament is torn or if there is a displaced fracture, surgery may be required. It’s essential to speak with a doctor to determine if surgery is necessary and what the complete recovery process will look like.
Your doctor may recommend massage therapy as part of your recovery plan. Massage therapy involves the manipulation of muscles, tendons, ligaments, and other soft tissues to improve circulation, enhance lymphatic drainage, and reduce inflammation. By increasing blood flow to the affected area, massage may promote the healing of damaged tissues and reduce pain and stiffness. Some benefits of massage therapy for treating soft tissue injuries include improving range of motion, increasing flexibility, and enhancing overall well-being.
Chiropractic care is a complementary and alternative medicine that seeks to align the body’s musculoskeletal structure to promote self-healing. Chiropractors use manipulation and adjustment techniques to restore joint mobility, reduce pain, and improve overall function. A chiropractor may complement other treatment options, such as physical therapy, to help manage pain and alleviate symptoms.
Take Soft Tissue Injuries Seriously and Seek Medical Attention After an Accident
It may take days or weeks for soft tissue injuries to cause you pain or discomfort after an accident. The earlier you seek treatment, the better your outcome will be—that’s why it’s so important to get a medical evaluation immediately after a car accident, even if you don’t feel symptoms. If you’ve been involved in an accident, Impact Medical Group of St. Petersburg is ready to partner with you on your recovery. Call us today at (727) 722-8103 to schedule your free medical evaluation.