A car accident can be traumatic, both mentally and physically. Healing can be a long process, but the sooner you start, the quicker you will begin to feel better. What’s more, your behavior in the few days following your accident can set the tone for the rest of your recovery. Failing to take care of yourself can mean a longer recovery period.
Consider the following tips for healing after your car accident:
- Follow your doctor’s advice. Car accident injuries can range from a few bruises to extreme internal damage. If you’re in a car accident, you should see a doctor for a check up, even if you think you’re all right. A doctor can ensure you don’t have a concussion or any unseen internal injuries. Pay attention to your doctor’s diagnosis and follow his or her advice for healing. Be sure to make an appointment for a check up so the doctor can assess your progress.
- Rest. Bed rest is important immediately following a bad injury. Your body needs extra energy to heal, and sleeping helps you create that energy. Follow your doctor’s recommendations for how much bed rest you should take.
- Use ice. If you have any swelling or pain immediately following your accident, ice treatments can help ease them both. Do not apply ice directly – always wrap it in a cloth. If you feel too cold on the area you’re icing, wrap the ice in another cloth. Icing an injury should not be painful. Do not leave the ice on for more than 20 minutes at a time.
- Later, use heat. Ice is good for dealing with the immediate symptoms of an injury. Later on, as you begin to rehabilitate your injured muscles, heat helps relax them so they perform better. Similarly to ice, a heat treatment should never be painful or cause burns. Apply heat for 20 minutes at a time.
- Stretch. Gentle stretching is a great way to rehabilitate your body once you are done with the bed rest portion of your healing. Don’t do difficult or advanced stretches right away. Your body may be stiffer than you’re used to, and you should listen to how you feel to determine what intensity of a stretch is right. Over stretching at this stage can injure your already sensitive muscles, which means more pain and longer healing time. Stretch three times a day, doing three repetitions of each stretch for 30 seconds. Ease back if the stretch becomes painful. Ask your doctor for advice on what sort of stretches will be most helpful to you.
- Stay hydrated. Dehydration is an easy way to increase the time it’ll take your body to heal. In most cases, you need more water than usual while you are healing. Keep a water bottle at your side so you can hydrate frequently. Your body needs water to heal efficiently.
Were you or a loved one injured in a car accident through the negligence or misconduct of another? You may be eligible for financial compensation. Contact Wilson Kehoe Winingham today for a free case evaluation.