A car accident is one of the most stressful and traumatic experiences someone can experience. For many people, their vehicle represents a critical part of their life and routine. Repairs or replacements for an automobile tend to be expensive and time-consuming. This can become such a preoccupation that it may be easy to ignore or forget about the physical trauma that you encountered during the ordeal. Even if you are not physically incapacitated by the incident, you cannot ignore the enormous impact and force that was likely imposed upon your body. While cars and vehicles can eventually be repaired or replaced altogether, it is of paramount importance that you consult a medical professional to focus on your physical wellbeing. Even if they are not evident at first, the injuries you sustain in a car accident can be the kind that will affect you the rest of your life. As it stands, you may need to be prepared to take on some additional upkeep in the form of new habits and exercises that can help manage pain or assist with your long term healing. It is important to point out that if you are recovering from an auto accident, any exercises, stretches, or therapy you undergo should be done under the advice of a trained medical professional. A chiropractor is specially trained to recommend courses of treatment in these situations.
Stretching is an effective form of recovery because it can be done most anywhere and typically does not require specialized equipment. It helps keep the body active while at the same time preventing scar tissue from building up or forming. Some stretches that may help recovery patients are:
Cat and Cow
Get on your hands and knees, with your palms flat on the floor lined below your shoulders, and your hips situated directly above your knees. Inhale a deep breath, and while doing so gently round your back, so it rises toward the ceiling. Hold this stretch for about ten seconds. Then give a long exhale, while doing so gently arch your back toward the floor, so it is your tailbone and chest that is stretching toward the ceiling. Again, hold the position for about ten seconds. Slowly alternate this stretch of your spine for five repetitions.
Knee to Chest Stretch
Lie flat on your back. Slowly bend your right knee, pulling the knee toward your chest. Reach with your arms and lace your fingers around your right thigh, knee, or shin, depending on your desired comfort and flexibility. Gently pull the knee to your chest. This is stretch focuses on your lower back, along with the muscles in your bottom and the back of your thighs. Once you have the stretch, slowly lower your leg back to the ground. Repeat the stretch five times for each leg.
For this, you will be on your hands and knees again. The focus is keeping your spine in a neutral position while your neck and head look straight down at the floor. While keeping your abdominals tight and straight, extend your right leg directly behind you. At the same time extend your left arm straight in front of you. Try to keep your spine straight and neutral during this entire process. Hold this position for about ten seconds. Lower your right leg and left arm back to their original positions then repeat but alternate the leg and arm. Repeat this stretch five times each side.
Upright Standing Tilt
Stand upright with your feet shoulder width apart and your arms resting by your sides. Raise your right arm straight above your head, with your fingers extended. Keeping your feet in place, slowly tilt your upper body to the left until you feel the stretch running down your right side. Hold this stretch for about ten seconds, then gently stand back upright and lower your arm back to your side. Repeat the stretch five times for each side.
Get on your hands and knees, with your knees just slightly wider than hip distance apart. Turn your feet inward, so they touch each other. Bend your knees and rest your weight backward, so you are assuming a comfortable seated position on your feet. At this point extend both arms forward into a relaxing stretch. Hold this position for about twenty seconds, then return back to your hands and knees. Repeat the stretching pose three times.
Recovery from an auto accident tends to be an involved, meticulous process. Without proper preparation and guidance, your body might be unable to heal or may even mend incorrectly. Fortunately, there are means of making a recovery from even this situation, and these stretches may help when incorporated into a comprehensive plan. Consult your doctor or chiropractor, and get set on the road to recovery today.