Mobility issues arise for a variety of reasons. For instance, some people are born with physical disabilities that impair their mobility, while others who have fought and served for our country sustain injuries that leave them with physical challenges. One of the most common ways to experience mobility issues comes at the hand of motor vehicle accidents.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA),
The estimated number of people injured on the Nation’s roads increased in 2014, rising from 2.31 to 2.34 million injured people.
Below, we look at some of the ways in which physical therapy can help in the recovery process for improved mobility and faster recovery.
Benefits of Physical Therapy for Mobility
#1 - Physical therapy helps with pain management.
One of the biggest reasons to use physical therapy after an auto accident is because of the pain relief it can provide. Even if you are involved in a minor accident where you don't sustain major injuries, the tension or force of impact can still have an impact on your musculoskeletal system. Some of the most common automobile injuries include:
- Head injuries
- Chest injuries (ex: broken ribs)
#2 - Physical therapy may prevent chronic symptoms.
Someone who doesn't seek physical rehabilitation after a minor accident may wind up experiencing chronic symptoms later. For instance, you may have had a slight case of whiplash in a minor accident that can cause stiffness or recurring pain in your neck days, weeks, or even months after the accident.
In some cases, failing to seek proper physical rehabilitation treatment may cause vision problems, numbness, or even degenerative disc issues later in life.
#3 - Physical therapy may prevent surgery.
Receiving physical therapy may ultimately help you avoid surgery to fix problems that weren't initially addressed after an accident. If it winds up that you do need surgery to correct a mobility problem, physical therapy can aid in the recovery process - ultimately leading to a faster healing time.
How Physical Therapy Helps with Certain Injuries
The following are some common injuries seen after someone is involved in a car accident with examples for how physical therapy can help.
- Physical therapy can help with things such as: brushing your teeth, bathing, and dressing.
Spinal Cord Injuries
- Physical therapy can help by preventing muscle deterioration or atrophy (due to lack of use).
Ligament, Bone Injuries
- Physical therapy can help with mobility, flexibility, and muscle strength
For additional information on what to expect from physical therapy after an accident, read our article here.