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Auto Insurance pays up to $10,000 dollars of benefits for chiropractic care and physical therapy to treat your injuries. A patient can select just one type of treatment (Ex. physical therapy) or any combination.
Florida's new accident law states that you have only 14 days to be seen by a doctor/chiropractor . If no examination is completed you will lose all of your $10,000 auto related medical benefits.
What is whiplash?
It occurs when the head is suddenly forced backward or forward and is then snapped in the other direction. This kind of motion most often happens to people in a car that is hit from behind or the side. Less commonly, it might happen in a fall, a sports injury, or if you are roughly shaken. The motion causes stretching or tears (sprains) of muscles and ligaments in the neck, and it may damage the nerves. In rare cases, it may cause broken bones.
Ligaments hold the bones together at the joint. Ligaments also stop the bones from moving too far. When the bones are moved too far, the ligaments are injured. Ligament injury is called a sprain. Whiplash injury moves the bones of the neck too far apart, resulting in neck joint ligament injury (sprain).
Muscles cross the joints. Muscles generate the forces required to move the bones at the joint. If the movement of the joint is too far, not only the ligaments, but also the muscles will be injured. A muscle injury is called a strain. Whiplash trauma can injure both the ligaments (sprain) and the muscles (strain).
What are the signs of whiplash?
Signs of whiplash are pain and stiffness of the neck muscles. Pain may radiate into the head, chest, shoulders and down the arms. Headaches, feeling dizzy and pain in your back can also start up after an accident.
Signs of whiplash may not occur until the day after your injury. Pain and stiffness may go away, but then return a few days later.
You may have a more serious injury if you have:
· Severe pain in your neck.
· Pain down one or both arms.
· Pain that comes back after being gone for a few days.
· Numbness or tingling in your hands, arms, chest, or legs.
· Weakness in your arms, hands, or legs.
· Inability to move your head.
Studies show that the damage to the vehicle is not related to the whiplash injuries suffered by the passengers of the vehicle. Vehicle damage does not predict the degree of whiplash injury, the severity of symptoms, the duration of required treatment, the probability of suffering from chronic pain, or the acceleration of arthritis to the joints of the neck.
How whiplash occurs:
Whiplash injuries have been extensively studied and researched. There are literally thousands of medical and scientific studies describing every aspect of whiplash injury.
Society of Automotive Engineers, 1995
Society of Automotive Engineers, 1997
Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 1998
Journal Of Whiplash & Related Disorders, 2002
Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry, 2005
Whiplash Injuries, 2006)
A single whiplash injury can increase the incidence of neck spinal arthritis by 10 years compared to people who have not been in a whiplash accident. (The Journal of Orthopedic Medicine, 1997)
The object in question in a whiplash trauma is a human body. The human body has two large parts that have their own separate inertia, the trunk and the head. These two large pieces of inertial mass (the head and the trunk) are connected by a thin pole, the neck.
During a motor vehicle collision, a vehicle that is struck from behind will quickly move forward. As the vehicle moves forward, so do the passenger seats in the vehicle. As the passenger seat moves forward, so does the trunk of the passenger sitting in the seat. However, the head of the passenger in the seat does not move forward because the head has a separate inertia from the trunk. As the vehicle, the seat, and the trunk move forward from the collision, the head remains at rest, forcing the neck backwards.
The result is an inertial injury to the soft tissues of the vertebrae joints of the neck. Importantly, the neck does not hit anything; it sustains an inertial injury, similar to that seen in shaken baby syndrome.
Frequently asked questions:
· Q: Should I See An Attorney Before I See My Chiropractor?
A: It is important to get checked out by the doctor first. That way the findings from your exam will allow you the information you need in order to decide if an attorney is necessary. If necessary, we can refer you to a reputable and qualified attorney.
· Q: What if I have an attorney already, do I need to have them refer me to Oviedo Injury & Wellness Center?
A:The patient is allowed to go to any doctor they choose. Your health is the most important thing you have and you need to make sure you go to a reputable doctor. Our facility can provide you with multiple types of treatment (Ex, Chiropractic care, soft tissue therapy, physical therapy) in combination or separate. We have an extensive referral of medical providers to handle only injury related concerns. Your doctor will give you a detailed treatment plan and go over all your options available. Do not settle for a place that is more interested in your insurance than your health!
Q: What if I need an MRI?
A: We cam refer you to a qualified imaging center.
· Q: If I Need Treatment For This Injury, Do I Have To Pay For It Myself?
A: No, treatment is covered through your auto insurance and pays for your medical bills. Our office can assist and guide you in dealing with auto insurance. Our office can also provide care "on credit" when patients are represented by an attorney, but have no insurance. Using your medical coverage should not raise your premiums.
· Q: The Insurance Company Has Been Calling Me And Wants To Settle, what Should I Do?
A: Do not sign or settle until you have had an examination to evaluate your injuries. If you settle before your injury is fully resolved, you will have to pay out of pocket for your care.
· Q: I've been to the hospital and my medical doctor, do I really need to see a chiropractor?
A: You need a doctor who focuses in the treatment and diagnosis of auto accident injuries. Usually hospitals will check vital signs, make sure there are no life-threatening conditions and release the patient with pain relief medication. They normally do not treat the underlying musculoskeletal/whiplash injuries that lead to future pain. Even if you are not in pain, you should get a second opinion.
If you are in pain, treating right away will prevent scar tissue and long term issues related to the accident (Ex.disc herniation or arthritis) Remember medications often mask the pain and muscle spasms, but will not correct your injuries.
· Q: Does Your Care Hurt?
A: No, Dr. Ressler uses specific techniques that do not involve twisting or snapping of the neck and low back. Treatments enable you to continue your work or daily activities and minimize the discomfort from your accident injuries.
· Q: Is The Care Safe?
A: Yes, Dr. Ressler's specific techniques are extremely safe and effective. His years of experience in treating thousands of patients will give you the confidence that you found the right place for your care.
Q: What If My Car Sustained Only Minor Damage?
A: Documented studies done by Charles Carroll, M.D., Paul McAtee, M.D. and Lee Riley, M.D. revealed that: "The amount of damage to the automobile bears little relation to the force applied to the cervical spine (neck) of the occupants."
In other words, the damage to the passengers is not necessarily directly related to the damage to the vehicle.
Most auto accident victims are unaware of the damaging effects of hidden injuries, so they release their insurance company from liability by settling before being checked for hidden injuries.
Why is it important to schedule a physical examination! You may experience neck pain, back pain, headaches, muscle stiffness, fatigue, and/or a variety of other problems months or years down the road. Even Arthritis!
In our office, we evaluate auto accident victims and make any appropriate referrals to other health care providers if needed.
If you have any other questions about your accident or would like to talk with the doctor or insurance specialist please call for a free consultation 407-977-5005.
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