Kent, WA chiropractor Dr. Danene Saggau and her team at Lake Meridian Chiropractic are marking an important clinical milestone with the treatment of their 1,000th auto injury patient. Located along a major corridor between Tacoma and Seattle, the clinic has been helping victims of motor vehicle accidents in and around this Pacific Northwest community since 1990.
May 01, 2015 /prREACH/ -- The healthcare professionals at Lake Meridian Chiropractic, led by clinic owner and chiropractor Dr. Danene Saggau, have learned a great deal caring for the 1,000 auto injury patients who have visited their office in Kent, WA over the years. They understand that a motor vehicle accident can be a life-changing experience for drivers and passengers alike. That's why they use a combination of proven techniques, including chiropractic care, massage and cold laser therapy to help patients recover from car accidents as quickly and completely as possible.
There's no doubt that the way vehicles are designed and built today saves many lives and significantly reduces the seriousness of accident injuries. However, automobile accidents are still notoriously hard on the musculoskeletal system because of the forces involved, and there is still a very real risk of back and neck injuries. This is true even when drivers and passengers are protected by the latest safety equipment. In fact, recent research suggests that some types of injuries may actually be more likely when safety belts are used. Dr. Saggau has noticed this same pattern first-hand in her own practice. "With the modern three-point harness seat belts, we see more shoulder injuries and thoracic injuries because the seatbelt is going diagonally across the body. And when an airbag deploys, we often see more severe neck injuries and ligament laxity."
The widespread use of more effective safety equipment isn't the only factor changing the nature of auto injuries. In some areas, a shift toward smaller vehicles presents unique risks to their passengers. At the same time, the size, shape and physical condition of the average passenger is also changing. There are more overweight and obese people on the roads as well as larger numbers of seniors, who tend to have frames that are smaller and more fragile. So even though the overall fatality rate and the rate of serious injuries should continue to fall as safety systems continue to improve, minor to moderate injuries aren't going away any time soon.
According to Dr. Saggau, there are several common misconceptions that often work against victims in less severe accidents. "They believe that if the vehicle they were riding in doesn't have a lot of visible damage, then they shouldn't be hurt and that any pain they're feeling should just go away after a day or two. But that's not how the physics of car accidents actually work. If a car doesn't crumple to absorb the forces of a collision, more of the energy is translated into the occupants of the vehicle. This is why we always suggest that drivers and passengers get a prompt medical evaluation after a motor vehicle accident, even if they're not experiencing immediate symptoms."
In addition to the trauma of the car accident itself, recovery can sometimes present its own challenges. "Patients often underestimate how long a full recovery will take. It's not unusual for them to have unrealistic expectations and become disappointed with themselves when they don't meet them. There's a sense of frustration because they just don't feel like themselves, sometimes forgetting things and experiencing brain fog. This is actually typical of a whiplash injury and atlas subluxation, so we work hard to reassure our patients that they're not going crazy. Once their atlas has stabilized, they feel the fog lift and can start thinking clearly again."
Dr. Saggau reflects on the experience that comes with caring for 1,000 auto injury patients: "The fact that we've worked with a thousand people who have been involved in motor vehicle accidents means we have the clinical depth to diagnose and treat these kinds of injuries very effectively. The combinations of treatments we use reduce pain and inflammation and reduce the risk of permanent residual health problems. Our goal is to get our patients back to pre-injury status and back to doing the things they love to do. Typically, we can reduce healing time by a third."
Asked what auto accident victims can do to help themselves, Dr. Saggau suggests that prompt medical attention can make all the difference. "When it comes to collisions like these, there's a wide range of possible musculoskeletal injuries as well as potential for delayed symptoms. We know from long experience that early diagnosis and treatment lead to much faster-and much better-recoveries."
About Lake Meridian Chiropractic
Lake Meridian Chiropractic has been providing high-quality, effective chiropractic care to the residents of Kent, WA since 1990. The practice specializes in care for pediatric, adult and geriatric patients and offers treatments for a variety of injuries (including auto, sports, and workplace injuries) as well as other acute and chronic health conditions. Doctors practicing at the clinic have specialized training and experience in a range of advanced treatment techniques, including Atlas Orthogonal Adjustments.
Lake Meridian Chiropractic 12901 SE Kent-Kangley Rd Kent, WA 98030 (253) 630-1575 http://lakemeridianchiropractic.com