Did you know that a car accident you had 3-5 years ago could result in sudden weight gain?
It’s true, many of my chiropractic patients in St. Petersburg who have experienced sudden weight gain (more than 20 pounds in one year’s time) had a rear end car accident approximately four years before the weight gain started.
How is that even related? Most car collisions occur when the person is waiting in a stopped position at a red light and the driver of the other car isn’t paying attention and slams into the back of the stopped car.
With the increased use and popularity of cell phones this problem has gotten worse in recent years. In fact, there are more reported cases of whiplash each year since cellphones became introduced into society.
Whiplash Injuries from Car Accidents
Whiplash is a condition which results from a jarring of the neck forward and backwards upon impact to the body. It causes the head, which weighs (8-10 pounds), to spring in the same manner. This results in damage to the muscles and ligaments which support the neck and keep the head poised overtop of the shoulders.
Unfortunately, the area where the neck meets the torso or rib cage becomes damaged the most. This is because the momentum of the head at the time of the vehicle collision was too much for the muscles and ligaments to handle. Ironically the same situation occurs for the driver who hit the other car as well as the driver who is waiting at the red light.
This is why they invented headrests in cars. Before headrests were invented, more people lost their lives. But even with headrests, injuries from car accidents cause damage to the area of the spine where the neck meets the rib cage. This damage begins actually begins a process where the bones of the spine start to change shape. This is known as “Osteoarthritis” or “Degenerative Joint Disease”.
How Can a Car Accident Cause Weight Gain?
The thyroid is the organ that manages weight. Because the nerves which control the thyroid exit the spine at the very same level where the neck meets the torso these nerves get squashed as the bones start to change shape.
With the nerve supply getting pinched off, the thyroid ends up becoming sluggish and the person gains weight, gets chronically tired. There are also other hormonal changes that can occur.
The body has a delayed reaction, think about smoking. One cigarette won’t kill you but overtime it can lead to cancer. Same thing with spinal degeneration. Every car accident you have will change the shape of the bones in your spine. You won’t notice it right away but after 3-5 years you will have symptoms which are related to that car accident you had which you totally forgot about.
Important: See a Chiropractor after a Car Accident
If you have been involved in a motor vehicle accident, doctor immediately. You can schedule an appointment online through our new patient form. The earlier you address it the less likely those bones will change shape. In the State of Florida every driver has minimum $10,000 in Personal Injury Protection (PIP) Benefits. In fact, Florida PIP law provides you with $10,000 of coverage for medical expenses if you have been injured in an accident. It does not matter if you caused the accident or if you were hit by another driver.
Be aware that if you don’t see a doctor within 14 days of the accident you will lose your benefits. Protect your future health now by seeing a Chiropractor immediately after you have a car accident.