Have you had a car accident? Call it a "bad" car accident if it causes a lot of pain. But frequent damage to our body doesn't show up as pain. Look at heart disease. The first sign of a decade old problem is frequently a fatal heart attack. Damage to the joints of our spine can be the same way; often not causing any strong pain until our condition is extremely bad. Most of the patients I treat think the cause of their problem was a car accident long ago that didn't get treated or was treated only with medication.
The sudden motion of a car accident often tears the soft tissue in our joints. This can cause anything from no pain to a dull ache or worse. When a tissue gets damaged the muscles tighten up in that area to protect it and prevent further injury. If nothing is done to encourage normal motion this joint may never move again. This is a chiropractic subluxation. Only chiropractors are licensed and trained to look for these. So if you have never been to a chiropractor, you have never been checked for this. This problem will be the site of future disc deterioration and arthritis. People often don't realize that in most cases there is no out of pocket expense for the person that has been in a car accident.
Many doctors will answer your questions about this over the phone. Please feel free to call with any questions. I'd be happy to return your call within 24 hours.