By Brian Yu BScPT, DPT
If you have been in a car accident, it is important to assess yourself to monitor your injuries. Regular testing in the morning can assist you in making better activity decision later in the day.
Following a car accident, it is normal to have pain and stiffness. For most, it is a balance of staying active and being respectful of your body. For others, body awareness is a challenge and perceived ability may be far greater than actual.
Self-assessment is a tool where one measures their own performance. Physical outcomes can be influenced by pain, effort, and injury. The purpose of the self-assessment is not to game the test, but rather to gain feedback on what you can and cannot do. By doing the following test, you will have a pretty good picture of your functional performance.
Do the following tests. If the test is easy, give yourself a 3 out of 3. If you cannot perform the movement due to pain or any other symptom, give yourself a 0 out of 3. If is somewhere in the middle, you got a 1. If it is almost there, but not really, you got a 2. Do not perform any tests where you feel you are unsafe.
If you score is 30/30, you are in great shape. If your score is less than 20/30, consult a physiotherapist. If your symptoms are less than 15/30, consult a physician.
After completing the test, monitor your symptoms over the next 24 hours. If your symptoms increase over the next 24 hours, consult your physiotherapist. It is normal to have delayed muscles soreness if you have complete moderate activity (i.e. completed 5 km run). It is not normal to have delayed soreness with a self-assessment scan examination.
If during or after the test, you experience 10/10 pain or have atypical or referred symptoms, consult a physician and physiotherapist. If you are currently seeing a health care provider, complete the self-assessment on a daily basis to monitor your progress. If any of the tasks are difficult during the self-assessment, caution should be taken with corresponding activities.