Overcoming Back Pain After a Car Accident

If you’ve been in a car accident, then you understand firsthand how stressful the experience can be. When you add back pain into the mix, you may find yourself looking for a car accident chiropractor near you for help. People may develop back pain after a car accident for a variety of reasons, and it is important to seek medical attention as soon as possible, even if you don’t feel any immediate pain. Some injuries that can cause back pain may not become apparent until days or even weeks after the car wreck, so an early diagnosis and treatment plan can help ensure a better outcome and quicker recovery.

What Causes Back Pain After a Car Accident?

What Causes Back Pain After a Car Accident

There are several reasons why you may experience back pain after a car accident, including the following injuries.


Whiplash is one of the most common car accident injuries and occurs when the force of impact causes your head and neck to jostle around violently. This can put a lot of strain and pressure on the muscles and tissues in your neck, shoulders, and upper back.

Herniated Disc

A car accident can also cause the discs in your spine to become damaged, which can lead to a herniated disc. The spinal discs in the spine separate vertebrae, offering shock absorption and support. If one of these discs slips out of place or becomes torn, it can put pressure on nearby nerves, causing pain and other symptoms.

Sprains & Strains

The force of a car accident can also cause sprains and strains in your back muscles and ligaments, which may result in pain and discomfort. Sprains and strains impact muscles, ligaments, and their connections to various structures in your back, including your spine.


In a severe car accident, the bones of the spine may break or fracture, which can cause intense pain. A fracture will require immediate medical attention to address your symptoms and treat the broken bone.

Signs & Symptoms of Back Injuries After a Car Accident


The signs and symptoms of back injuries after car wrecks can vary, but some of the most common ones include the following.


You may experience a dull or sharp pain in your upper, middle, or lower back or pain that starts in one area and radiates into another part of the back.


Touching or pressing on the injured area may cause increased discomfort.


You may notice your back feels stiff and sore, especially after sitting or standing for long periods of time.

Muscle Spasms

Muscle spasms in your back may also occur, which can cause pain and discomfort for periods of time, separated by momentary relief.

Tingling & Numbness

Car accident injuries that cause back pain can also aggravate nearby nerves, which may result in symptoms including numbness or tingling that extends into your arms or legs.

Reduced Range of Motion

You may notice your ability to bend, twist, or move your back is limited after a car accident injury.

Diagnosing Back Pain After a Car Crash

Diagnosing Back Pain After a Car Crash

If you experience back pain after a car accident, your doctor will typically start with a physical examination and discuss your symptoms with you. Here are a few things you can expect when your doctor diagnoses potential car accident injuries:

Medical History

Your doctor will ask you about your symptoms, when they first started, and any past medical problems or treatments. Previous injuries, existing conditions, and other health factors can impact how your body responds to a car accident injury.  

Physical Examination

The physical examination may involve your doctor checking your back for any tenderness, swelling, or other signs of injury. They may also want to test your range of motion, strength, and reflexes.

Imaging Tests

Imaging tests, such as X-rays or CT scans, can provide your car accident doctor with a clear view of your back to check for any injuries or underlying conditions that may be causing your discomfort.

What You Can Do to Recover from Back Pain After an Accident

Here are some steps you can take at home and with your car accident doctor to overcome back pain after a car accident:

RICE Method

The RICE method stands for rest, ice, compression, and elevation. The first thing you should do after an accident is give yourself enough time to rest so your body can heal. Icing the area can help reduce swelling and provides a temporary numbing sensation for pain relief. Compression with an elastic bandage or compression garment can also help reduce swelling and provide support to the affected area.

Gentle Exercises

Stretching can help relieve tension in your back muscles and improve your range of motion. You can also stretch other parts of the body in addition to your back to help reduce pain. For example, strengthening your core muscles can help reduce lower back pain.

Active Rehab: Stretching & Mobility Training

Your doctor may also recommend stretching and mobility training to promote healing after a car accident. This may include gentle yoga and other low-impact exercises to improve circulation and relieve back pain. For example, swimming is a great exercise for low back pain and can help relieve stress on your back.

Chiropractic Therapy

Chiropractic therapy involves an all-natural approach to improving your overall health and reducing your pain through a variety of techniques, including spinal adjustments. Chiropractic therapy can be effective in treating a variety of conditions and car accident injuries that cause back pain. From whiplash to a herniated disc, a car accident chiropractor can help you heal and recover after a wreck so you can improve your mobility and reduce your pain.

Start Back Pain Recovery Today

If you are dealing with back pain after a car accident, choose Affordable Chiropractic Killeen, Bell County’s trusted provider for injury care. Our team of car accident chiropractors will provide you with quality treatment and care to help you experience lasting pain relief and improve your overall health and well-being.