Summer is the time for travel! So as we gear up to a time when many of you will be travelling, check out this months newslter on how to take care of your body when traveling.
Take Care of your Body as you Travel
As summer holidays approach and many of us are planning road trips, it’s time to also talk about how to prevent back pain. Sitting in a car can cause a lot of back pain. Whether it’s the constant refrain of “are we there yet?” causing tension or just the static position of sitting for hours. Taking care of our back can seem like an impossible challenge while driving, however there are things you can do to mitigate the problems.
Movement is the most important thing to do. Although this may seem out of the question, simple things like shifting your body position rather than sitting still can help. Try to switch up your position every 15-20 minutes. Move your ankles to give your hamstrings a little stretch. Any movement that you do and is safe to do in the car will be better than sitting still. Every little bit of movement helps.
Get out of the car at regular intervals. When sitting in one position for long periods of time, your back muscles stiffen up and cause aches and even muscle spasms. Moving and stretching is vital as it helps get your blood moving. Which then brings nutrients and oxygen to your muscles. For every 2 hours of driving you should get out and take a 15 minute break to move around and stretch your back. If you experience back pain easily, you should try to have more frequent breaks.
Comfort is Key
Start off comfortably. Make sure you are positioned well right from the beginning of your road trip to mitigate discomfort and pain later.
·Support the natural inward curve of your lower back by using a special cushion or pillow.
·Empty your pockets-when you sit on anything, including a wallet or phone can throw off your spinal alignment and turn into pain later.
·Keep your knees slightly higher that your hips and your chin pulled in to keep your head over your spine. Find a comfortable distance from the steering wheel to balance safety and comfort. Sit with your breast bone at least 25 cm (10 inches) from your steering wheel for airbag safety. Sitting too far away from your steering wheel can cause a need to reach too far and cause strain on your lumbar spine, shoulders, wrists and neck.
Apply Heat and Cold
Cold helps to reduce inflammation and swelling. Heat increases the flow of blood and relaxes the muscles. There are products on the market to buy and also many options to make your own heat and cold packs. Apply either heat or cold for no longer than 15-20 minutes at a time. Allow your skin a break for a couple of hours before reapplying. If you are the driver, it is best to take a break from driving when applying these therapies.
Enjoy your summer trips. Stay safe and healthy. We look forward to hearing all about your adventures! And if driving was too much for you and you now have a sore back, call us or book on line and Dr. Frederick will be happy to help you out.
Check out the video at the bottom (made previously for holiday traveling) for more tips when driving long distances!
Massage Corner:Lorraine Tangen
Massage Therpy for Physical Jobs:
- Repetitive Motion-Upper lib pain due to repetitive motion is a common work injury. Massage therapy can help provide relief
- Rish Factors-Work related musculoskeletal pain is more common with prolonged static work, forceful exertions or vibrations, and awkward postures
- Physically Demanding Jobs-Low back pain is extremely common among truck drivers and factory workers. Massage therapy can provide back pain relief.
- Stress and Pain-Occupational stress can lead to physical pain and increased anxiety. Massage therapy can relieve the physical symptoms of stress.
- Missing Work-Musculoskeletal pain in a common reason to miss work. Massage therapy can help keep people in jobs they love for longer.
- Remedial Exercise-RMT’s can recommend remedial exercise which, especially when combined with hands-on treatment, can help relieve work-related pain.
https://rmtao.com<a href=’https://www.freepik.com/photos/couple-car’>Couple car photo created by gpointstudio – www.freepik.com</a>
You can download and share a copy of this months newsletter here: June Newsletter