Car wrecks typically involve a sudden change in velocity, especially if there’s another vehicle involved in the accident. This sudden change in velocity creates high-intensity forces that are then applied to the car and everything and everyone inside. The human body is strong and resilient, but even it can sustain damage when exposed to extreme force. In the aftermath of a car wreck, you may find that your body has been stretched, compressed, or twisted in ways that cause discomfort or pain. These sensations, and the forces behind them, are the basis for many cases of radiculopathy.
First, let’s define radiculopathy. According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, radiculopathy can be defined as the pinching of nerves at the root, which can also produce pain, weakness, and numbness in the hands, wrists, legs, and other extremities. Your spine houses the spinal cord, which connects your brain to the rest of your body. Nerve roots run along the entire length of your spinal cord, threading their way between the vertebrae that make up your spine. These nerve roots are responsible for sensation and motor function. If anything were to happen to impede their functionality, then the victim would suffer from pain, loss of feeling, or even loss of motor skills.
Radiculopathy occurs when the vertebrae pinch the nerves running from the spinal cord. In a normal spine, the vertebrae are kept separated by discs that promote flexibility and absorb violent impacts. But even the human body cannot be entirely prepared for sudden exposure to extreme forces. Car accidents may put enough strain on the spine to cause those vertebrae to compress and squeeze the nerves running between them. Radicular pain, then, is just one of the many symptoms of radiculopathy. Typically, patients will report a pain that radiates from the back or hips and into your arms, legs, and spine. Patients may experience muscular weakness in addition to chronic discomfort.
Fortunately, chiropractic care offers a safe and effective solution to your radicular pain. Through a series of spinal adjustments, chiropractors can correct any vertebral shifts and realign the spine so that your nerves can function as intended. Many chiropractors also offer specialized stretches and exercise routines that will help to supplement their adjustments and expedite the healing process. If you’ve suffered from radiculopathy after a car accident, Wirth Chiropractic would be glad to get you started on the path to healing and wellness. Contact us and schedule your free consultation today!