How to Avoid Back Pain While Driving
People with existing back pain often dread driving even short distances because they know their back pain will flare up. People who don’t experience back pain daily could also be uncomfortable when driving long distances. It’s hard to practice active spine care techniques while driving, but there are a few adjustments you can make to relieve some pressure on your spine and discs. Driving for an extended amount of time is the same as sitting at a desk for the same amount of time, so here are tips to help you prevent some of the discomfort.
Adjust Your Seat
Adjust the backrest, neck rest and seat positioning to ensure your feet are flat on the floor and you don’t have to reach out to hold the steering wheel. Your spine and orthopedic center also suggests keeping both hands on the steering wheel to keep your spine aligned, so make sure your seat is positioned where it’s comfortable to do so. Your arms should be bent slightly when you are holding the steering wheel to relieve some of the pressure from your back.
Add Some Lumbar Support
Newer cars today come with good lumbar support. However, if yours doesn’t then you may want to consider bringing along a pillow or even a rolled up blanket for added support. It’s important to sit as far back in the seat as you can to keep your spine aligned, and having the extra lumbar support present will help. If you drive long distances regularly, ask your spine and orthopedic center for suggestions on the proper lumbar support you can incorporate.
There’s no specific amount of time you should limit your driving to. If your back starts hurting, find the next rest stop or parking lot and take a break. Get out of your car for a few minutes and do some lower back stretches to relieve a little tension. Some people have to take breaks every 30 minutes or so, while others can go for a longer time without stopping. It’s important to feel comfortable while you’re driving, so plan your trips accordingly and build in rest stops along the way.
DBC Active Spine Care® is more than just your average spine and orthopedic center. We work with clients to not only relieve their back pain, but also prevent the pain from occurring again in the future. We do this by promoting active spine care habits to strengthen the surrounding muscles to provide the most possible support for your spine. The result is getting back to feeling normal as you go through your daily actions. Feel free to contact us at any time to see how our program can help you get back to being free of pain in your back.