Dealing with Strains and Sprains After Your Car Accident
Being bruised and having sore, tender muscles is not unusual in the days and weeks after a car crash. As one of the most common types of car accident injuries, muscle, tendon, and ligament strains, sprains, and tears can occur in even the most minor collisions. While they may not appear as life impacting as some other types of injuries, they can result in permanent disabilities if not cared for properly. The following is important information to be aware of regarding strains, sprains, and tears.
Soft Tissue Injuries
Injuries to the muscles, tendons, or ligaments are known as soft tissue injuries, and they can occur as the result of overuse, as well as from acute injuries caused by accidents such as car crashes and collisions. According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS), these injuries fall into three main categories:
- Sprains: Sprains involve stretched or torn ligaments, which are tissues that connect the bones while stabilizing and supporting the joints. Ankles, knees, and wrists are particularly vulnerable to sprains as the result of car accidents.
- Strains: These involve stretches or tears that affect the muscle or ligaments, which are the tissues that connect muscle to bone. In car accidents, these types of injuries often occur in the foot, leg, or back.
- Contusions: These are bruises resulting from blows that damage or crush the underlying connective tissues, causing the blood to pool up beneath the injury. While bruising may seem minor, they can be a symptom of more serious and potentially permanent damage to the underlying tissues.
Caring For Soft Tissue Injuries
Beyond pain medications and anti-inflammatory drugs, you will need to allow yourself plenty of recuperation time after a soft tissue injury to avoid re-damaging the site. The Mayo Clinic advises the “RICE” treatment:
- Rest: Reduce activities and avoid putting weight on the injured body part
- Ice: Use ice packs periodically during the day for 20 minutes at a time
- Compression: Depending on the injured body part, your doctor may use an elastic bandage as a wrap or require you to wear a brace
- Elevation: Keep the injured part raised above the level of the heart, if possible, to decrease blood flow to the injury
If your injury is severe, surgery may be required to repair tears or ruptured tissues. Once several weeks or months have passed and you have moved beyond the acute stage, physical therapy can help to increase strength and restore function in the injured area. While you may be eager to resume your normal activities, it is important to follow all of your doctor’s treatment instructions to avoid permanent disabilities.
Get Help With a Car Accident Injury Claim Today
If you have suffered a soft tissue injury as the result of a car accident, contact Anastopoulo Law Firm right away. Our experienced South Carolina car accident attorneys understand the lengthy recuperation times and medical care these injuries often require in order to heal properly. Either through an insurance company claim or by filing a personal injury lawsuit against the at fault iver, we can help you get the maximum amount of compensation you need to recover.