Auto Accidents Chiropractic Care Uncategorized

Chest Pain After a Car Accident

Chest Pain After a Car Accident

The traumatic nature of a car accident manifests itself in different forms. While some victims might witness physical symptoms, others suffer more mental effects. These days, mental effects have become highly regarded as a significant effect of car accidents. Yet, physical injuries and discomfort remain prevalent, one being chest pains.

Discomfort and chest pain after a car accident is pretty common. 

While they potentially indicate some of the most severe car crash injuries, this symptom is not always apparent during the crash. Sometimes, it takes days, weeks, and even months for chest pains to develop due to the shock and adrenaline experienced from a collision.


How Can a Car Accident Cause Chest Pain

There are several reasons why a car accident victim might develop chest pains. The most common reasons are airbags, seat belts, and impact from the steering wheel. Chest pain or injuries occur from impact of the restraining seatbelt and safety elements of a car or the impact of the car’s interior.

Discomfort and chest pain from an airbag or seatbelt are prevalent among people that have previously been involved in a car crash.

These impacts adversely affect the chest and could result in internal injury and damage in the affected area. However, not all chest pain results from physical effects on the chest. Obstruction of oxygen and blood flow to the heart could also result in severe distress and other discomforts to the chest after a car accident.


Reasons for Chest Pain After Car Accident

If you’ve recently been in a car accident, there are several reasons why you may be experiencing chest pain. These symptoms indicate common injuries such as scrapes and bruises to more severe conditions like internal injuries and cardiovascular disorders. Injuries and illnesses manifesting through chest discomfort following a vehicle crash are listed below.


Seat Belt Injury Chest Pain

Seat belts remain the best defense against road hazards as they help restrain car occupants in the event of a violent shock. However, they could also result in seatbelt-induced injury. This condition refers to a common injury that ranges from abrasions to bruising, internal abdominal injuries, and potentially vertebral fractures. Seat belt injury to the chest can be easily diagnosed and tend to appear across the abdomen and chest, causing pains.


Muscle Strain

As a result of car crashes, the chest muscles can become strained as they work to protect the body. When this happens, chest pains become noticeable from sudden movements, twisting, turning, and other random motions. Inflammation can also occur when strained muscles stretch out of the natural range of motion. More severe pains may result from a torn muscle. Whichever the condition, imaging diagnostic tests are required to understand the extent of the damage.


Bruised Ribs

Bruised ribs are standard among car accident victims and could result from seat belt syndrome. Some part of the chest, especially the lower rib, is covered by a seatbelt. When used in a car accident, they can exert significant pressure on the area of contact. 

If the impact is substantial enough, the seatbelt can bruise an occupant’s ribs in an attempt to restrain them. Chest pains from a bruised rib can cause pain and tightness in breathing. Imaging diagnostics is also the best way to diagnose a bruised rib accurately.


Steering Wheel Injury Chest Pain

The driver can be hurled forward into the steering wheel upon impact. This could result in the steering wheel crushing the driver’s chest. This trauma can cause numerous injuries, from bruising to fractures, resulting in chest pains.


Heart Attack

While car accidents can lead to considerable physical damage, the shock of such events can also trigger other conditions, such as a heart attack. A heart attack occurs when an artery that sends blood and oxygen to the heart is blocked. Chest pains associated with a heart attack are immediately noticeable and can cause shortness of breath, discomfort, and nausea. You should receive emergency care if your chest hurts after a car accident without apparent physical trauma.


Signs That Chest Pain Can Be Serious

Pain in the chest after a car accident is common, yet, as we have seen, these discomforts incorporate a wide range of injuries. Ultimately, the severity of chest pain after a car accident varies depending on the injury’s seriousness. In terms of impact, injuries such as bruisings are mostly less severe, and pains subside in a few days. Although, if you suffer from prolonged pains, most of which affect breathing and movement, it could be a sign of severe chest injuries.

A heart attack is one of the most severe conditions associated with chest pains. Discomfort, pressure, heaviness, tightness, squeezing, or pain in the chest or arm or below the breastbone indicates a heart attack, especially if there is no physical trauma to the chest. In this case, victims should seek immediate medical attention.


Can A Chiropractor Help You If You Have Chest Pain?

A common cause of chest pain is a misalignment of the ribcage, which can also result from trauma. In this case, a simple chiropractic adjustment or a series of adjustments can help to restore the alignment, thereby addressing chest pains and allowing the body to heal.

Car Accident chiropractic care can be an effective treatment for chest and muscle pain after a car accident, and most medical professionals recommend this treatment for different trauma-related conditions. Medical professionals only explore this option when other life-threatening conditions have been ruled out; hence, it’s vital to undergo a thorough checkup and get an accurate diagnosis.


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