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Types of Therapy and Rehabilitation After a Car Accident

Types of Therapy and Rehabilitation After a Car Accident

An Arkansas car accident can result in a wide range of debilitating injuries. Depending on the types and severity of the injuries you sustain, your doctor may prescribe therapy and rehabilitation as an integral part of your treatment plan. Physical therapy is often recommended to help car accident victims return to their normal quality of life or something close to it. Its many benefits include improving mobility and regaining strength.

At the Law Office of Jason M. Hatfield, P.A., we recognize the physical, emotional, and financial toll that a crash can take on a person. Our Arkansas car accident lawyers are here to help you recover compensation for your injury-related costs so that you can focus on your recovery. If you were injured due to someone else’s negligence, you have the right to pursue damages for all your medical expenses, including surgery, medication, therapy, and rehabilitation.

Common Car Accident Injuries

Head and back injuries are among the most serious injuries that can occur in Arkansas car accidents. Their effects can be wide-ranging, with the potential to affect your day-to-day life. Car accidents are responsible for 36.5 percent of the around 12,500 spinal cord injuries that occur in the country each year. Head injuries can result in concussions, skull fractures, vision problems, and brain injuries.

A crash does not have to take place at a high speed to cause severe injuries. An estimated 60 percent of car accident injuries occur when vehicles are traveling at low speeds of 6 to 12 mph.

Almost half of all chronic neck pain among U.S. patients arises from car accidents, particularly low-speed rear-impact collisions. Rear-end collisions involve jolting motions upon impact. The rapid movement of the head and neck can result in whiplash, a painful neck injury that can restrict movement. Whiplash is one of the most common injuries sustained in car accidents.

Blunt force trauma from a collision can result in collapsed lungs, fractured ribs, and other broken bones. Car accident victims may suffer cuts, bruises, and injuries to their chest or shoulders due to seatbelts and airbags. Such injuries typically occur if a car occupant is struck by debris or the side of a vehicle.

Car accident injuries can vary greatly and can include the following:

Signs You May Need Therapy and Rehabilitation After a Car Accident

While certain car accident injuries are obvious and require immediate medical treatment, others, like internal bleeding or sprains, may not be apparent right away. Seeing a doctor is vital to determine the best course of treatment for your injuries.

Arkansas car accident victims should also look out for any symptoms that emerge in the hours and days after a crash, as they may point to underlying injuries. Signs like numbness, migraines, difficulty sleeping, joint pain, dizziness, or lingering aches may be indicative of various injuries.

While around 92 percent of whiplash injuries cause neck pain, car accident victims may experience many other symptoms. Headaches occur in about 57 percent of cases, while sleep disturbance is reported in 39 percent of whiplash injuries.

Your healthcare provider may recommend physical therapy or other forms of rehabilitation to treat your injuries and provide pain relief. Neck injuries, for example, may require stretching exercises to improve mobility and reduce stiffness.

Proper therapy can be effective in helping you return to the daily activities and lifestyle you were accustomed to before the car accident occurred. Without proper treatment, injuries can worsen with time and lead to chronic pain or disability.

Common Types of Therapy for Car Accident Victims

Many different types of treatments fall under the umbrella of therapy and rehabilitation. Traditional therapies for car accident victims may include physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy. Less traditional forms of therapy include music therapy, massage therapy, and acupuncture. Here are the therapies that are more commonly used to treat Arkansas car accident victims and the role they play in the recovery process:

Physical Therapy

Physical therapy aims to help patients increase their flexibility, improve mobility and restore the strength and function of injured body parts so that they can carry out daily activities. This type of therapy can be highly beneficial for individuals who have suffered whiplash. A doctor may also recommend physical therapy to car accident victims who have sustained spinal cord injuries, back injuries, neck trauma, traumatic brain injuries, nerve damage, or broken bones.

Treatment may involve exercises and stretches, balance rehabilitation, or tests to identify any underlying neurological issues. There are many subspecialties within the physical therapy field, such as orthopedic, neurological, and pediatric therapies. Your treatment plan will depend on the nature of your injuries as well as your medical history.

Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapy helps a patient learn how to cope with the effects of an injury on their daily life. Therapists help car accident victims regain fine motor skills that are lost due to their injuries. Occupational therapy becomes necessary when a person suffers a traumatic brain injury, paralysis, amputation, or other type of catastrophic injury.

The aim is to help patients modify their surroundings so that they can regain independence, return to work, take care of their daily needs, and enjoy a better quality of life. The occupational therapy process involves evaluating the patient and developing a treatment plan based on their short-term and long-term goals. For example, the therapist may recommend making changes to a person’s work setup, identifying helpful mobility devices such as a wheelchair, or conducting mental exercises to improve memory.

Speech Therapy

Some car accident victims may require speech therapy as part of their rehabilitation. This type of therapy helps patients develop or recover their communication skills, along with addressing swallowing-related disorders. Car accidents can result in speech and language problems when victims suffer traumatic brain injuries. Speech therapy may become necessary when a person has difficulty speaking, hearing, understanding, or processing information.


The effects of a car accident are not just limited to physical injuries. Being involved in a crash can be a traumatic event that causes emotional distress. Victims may suffer post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, depression, or other types of psychological conditions. They may develop a fear of driving or have difficulty focusing. The challenges of coping with painful injuries and being unable to engage in daily activities can take a mental toll. Psychotherapists and other mental health professionals can help patients get their life back on track.

Benefits of Physical Therapy After a Car Accident

Therapy and rehabilitation help you recover from physical injuries and the emotional effects of an Arkansas car accident. Physical therapy has the potential to prevent long-term disabilities. Adding it to your treatment plan, based on your doctor’s recommendations, can help accelerate your return to normal life.

A study found that a four-week treatment program comprising physical therapy, occupational therapy, and psychotherapy helped car accident victims increase their working hours from none to 21 hours per week after six months. The patients were able to work 30 hours per week after undergoing 60 months of therapy. Along with speeding up the healing process, therapy and rehabilitation can:

  • Reduce pain
  • Increase mobility
  • Strengthen muscles
  • Restore physical function
  • Enhance emotional wellbeing
  • Decrease chances of surgery
  • Address lingering issues
  • Minimize reliance on painkillers

Who Pays for Therapy and Rehabilitation After a Car Accident?

In Arkansas, the negligent driver who caused the car accident is responsible for covering the victim’s medical expenses, such as surgeries, doctor visits, and medications. The cost of therapy and rehabilitation also qualify for compensation in a personal injury claim.

While the negligent driver and their insurance company are responsible for paying for the therapy you need, convincing them to cover your expenses may not be easy or straightforward. An experienced Arkansas car accident attorney can help you pursue maximum compensation for your injuries. The Law Office of Jason M. Hatfield, P.A. has a track record of filing successful personal injury claims for clients who have been injured in Arkansas car accidents.

You can submit medical records to prove your need for therapy and fight any allegations from the other party that your injuries are not as severe as you claim. Additionally, attending physical therapy sessions can establish a pattern of care and show that you are not exaggerating your injuries. It indicates that you are following your doctor’s instructions and taking the recovery process seriously.

Contact an Arkansas Car Accident Lawyer

Getting injured in an Arkansas car accident can turn your life upside down. Besides the physical and emotional effects of the crash, you may be worried about the financial toll of paying for expensive medical bills. If you have been injured in a collision, contact an experienced car accident attorney right away. You may be eligible to pursue compensation from the party who was at fault for your injuries.

The Law Office of Jason M. Hatfield, P.A. represents injured Arkansans from all over Northwest Arkansas, including Springdale, Fayetteville, Bentonville, Rogers, Fort Smith, Berryville, Harrison, and Huntsville. Call us today at (479) 361-3575 to schedule your free consultation.

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