1. CHECK IF THIS PERSON IS ACTUALLY LICENSED AND/OR BOARD CERTIFIED.
2. BE THE CONCERNED PATIENT & ASK WHY YOU ARE RECEIVING A CERTAIN COURSE OF TREATMENT OR A CERTAIN MEDICATION.
3. ALWAYS CHECK WHAT YOUR DOCTOR’S REPORT SAYS. ASK FOR A COPY EVERY NOW AND THEN. IT IS YOUR RIGHT! IF IT DOESN’T MAKE UP WITH WHAT YOU HAVE BEEN REPORTING, THEN SOMETHING IS OFF.
4. MAKE SURE YOU ASK FOR ALL MEDICAL RECORDS BEFORE ACTUALLY DISCONTINUING SERVICE, BECAUSE AFTER YOU ARE NO LONGER A PATIENT, THEY WILL NOT BE AS WILLING TO WORK WITH YOU.
This following is based on a TRUE STORY, but is only a personal perspective from a REAL person after a REAL auto accident:
Whiplash is a tricky thing. After you have been in a car accident, you check yourself; you look good, no broken bones, no brushes, no bleeding, and you say to self, “self, I’m okay”. And in the moment you are okay, because your pain is masked by the overwhelming rush of adrenaline that is going through your body after such a trauma. And yes, even though you may have been in only a minor finder bender, you have gone through a trauma. Our bodies were not intended to be jerked around like so.
Then what happens with whiplash is you wake up the next day and are a little bit stiffness in your body and you try to convince yourself this is natural and you take a minor pain reliever. The medication is now the thing that is masking your problem and you say to yourself, “self, I’m okay”. You are embarrassed to make a big deal out of a non-obvious problem and try to convenience yourself it does not exist.
So, by the time you actually recognize you have a problem and go to a doctor, the x-ray show you have lost the natural curve in your neck and your spine is off-line. And of course you think no big deal and your doctor says give me 3-5 weeks and you will be fully recovered. Yes, you will feel okay because of being under current treatment and your alignment will look better, but for some reason you will never fully recover. When the treatment stops, your pain comes back. It can also come back accompanied with numbness, migraines and other problems you would never imagine. Then years down the road your problem with your loss of curve in your neck becomes so bad, your bones start to fuse together and surgery is the only relief you find.
And the trick here is that you have already signed a general release with the insurance company and you are stuck with a life time of pain, suffering, loss of life, and medical bills after medical bills.
CLICK HERE TO SEE CHART OF WHIPLASH INJURY: PHYSIOPEDIA.COM
The first thing to do is immediately after an accident is without hesitation, go directly to the emergency room. If an ambulance is not called, then have a friend take you. If you take yourself, then the legitimacy of your physical injuries might be questioned.
While you are at the ER, be sure that you actually get to see a doctor and not just a physician assistant. If X-rays are not taken, request them without being stuck up or bossy. Also, be aware that you will be treated differently due to that most ER personal will not want to get personally involved in your case so to avoid a legal case associated with most auto accidents. So, having said this, you sometimes have to be insistent with your treatment because you may have a serious injury that could be overlooked.
The next thing to do would be to follow the recommendation of the ER physician who will more than likely tell you that if you are not feeling better within the following “x” days, you should see your personal physician.
Regardless of whether you have a personal physician you should make sure you see an MD as opposed to an OD or chiropractor whom are not taken as seriously by insurance companies. However, this is not to say that after you see an MD you cannot go to a chiropractor. If possible and you are suffering with a soft tissue damage and have intentions of going to a chiropractor, get your MD to recommend one to you so this conversation will go in your medical records. This will come in handy in the future when the insurance company attempts to say they will not pay because you are not seeing an MD or physical therapist.
1. Make sure you are okay. Your health is first priority.
2. Call the police so there can be an official report – remember if the wreck is honestly not your fault do not say you’re sorry or this could latter be understood as fault.
3. Take a quick picture with your phone – even if a car has come to a stop and the driver gets out they sometimes freak out and still leave the scene.
4. Exchange info making sure they are who they say they are. Ask for a drivers licence and not just take their word that they are “John Doe”. If they are illegal or a criminal at large, they don’t want you to have their real identity and may give you the name of whom the car they are driving is registered to for example. Also, if they give you a cell number, make sure you call it and it rings the phone if their possession.
5. Take more pictures. It is always funny that if you have plenty of pictures of the damages, the insurance company never needs them, but if you don’t have pictures they are all the sudden a must.
6. Stay on the scene until you are allowed to seek medical attention. It is always the best policy to get checked out just in case because of all the emotions and adrenale going through your system.