Smaldone Chiropractic in Kingston, NY
What to do when first injured

How should I treat my back injury before getting chiropractic care?
Even as chiropractors we get confused on what to do when we get injured. When a person gets an injury there natural instincts take over. This instinct is a survival instinct. Many people have heard of it as the fight or flight instinct.

The fight or flight instinct is also known as a "sympathetic nervous system". What happens is all of you blood gets shots from your organs into you limbs arms, legs, etc. This reaction is to get ready to run or fight in case of danger. As a result of this blood shunting, your body sends inflammation to the injured area to stabilize it. This swelling if left untreated can turn into a long term splint called scar tissue. This is why many Doctors right after surgery will have there patients up and moving with in hours!

Let us say first that this is only for treatment of new minor contusions, strains, or strains. If you have a serious injury go to the emergency room. The first step to treating a minor injury  is to protect the area. In certain injury's this means stabilizing the area. For others it means protect the injury from further injury. In most cases it means both.

Next, almost every injury in the body when injured should be iced. Study after study comparing cold, ultra sound, electric stimulation, heat, and paraffin shows ice is the deepest penetrating and most beneficial to newly injured patients. Never ice for more than 20 minutes at a time and there should always be a thick layer of towel between you and the ice pack to prevent frost bite. Lastly never ice over superficial nerves in the body such as the funny bone with out extra thick protection.

The third step to taking care of a new injury is so compress the area. Compression should be done gently and not with great force. The compression is to counter act the swelling that may be occurring. Note do not compress the chest, neck, or stomach in new injury. Usually the compression aspect to head injury is provided by a ice bag.

Our fourth step that a person should take is to elevate the minor injury. Elevation provides a resistive path for the swelling to build up in the area. Elevation of the arms or legs is usually the only areas that are elevated. Make sure to only elevate for 10minutes at a time and take the area out of elevation if it starts tingling, burning, or going numb.

A Simple acronym used in the medical field is P.R.I.C.E:
Protection
Ice
Compression
Elevation 
 

Lastly, never try to treat your injury's if they are moderate or serious. It is crucial in many cases to get immediate care. If not treated fast some injuries can be long lasting, permanent, and life threatening. Always have you chiropractic doctor or physician look at you if the injury lasts longer than a few days or is more than just a bump.

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 Chiropractic Kingston